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  • Alex Lipovtsev

New York State COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Executive Order

Governor Andrew Cuomo issued an omnibus executive order (EO) intended to clear any legal and regulatory barriers to an efficient mass vaccination effort. The EO contains several statutory and regulatory waivers to facilitate implementation of the State’s vaccination program. Among other things, the EO expands the use of standing orders and authorizes several categories of health care professionals to supervise or administer the COVID-19 vaccination, though such authorization may vary according to profession and vaccination site. The EO’s highlights include:

  • Physicians, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses may issue standing orders for COVID-19 vaccination.

  • The requirement to obtain consent to report immunization information in the City and State immunization registries (City Immunization Registry [CIR] and New York State Immunization Information System [NYSIIS]) for patients over the age of 19 is suspended. All reports to CIR or NYSIIS must be made within 24 hours after vaccine administration.

  • Licensed pharmacists certified to provide immunizations may prescribe, order to, or execute a patient-specific or standing order to administer the COVID-19 vaccination.

  • The following professionals may administer the vaccination at Points of Dispensing (PODs) after receiving certain training: licensed practical nurses, licensed pharmacists without certification to administer immunizations, midwives, dentists, certain dental hygienists, podiatrists, EMTs, and advanced EMTs.

  • Students with one year of clinical experience in medical, nursing, physician assistant, pharmacy, dentistry, podiatry, and midwifery programs may administer the vaccination at PODs.

  • Emergency applications for construction of temporary vaccination sites may be processed without the usual approvals.

  • Certain clinical documentation standards are relaxed.

The vaccine EO will remain in effect through January 12, 2021. All EOs can be issued only 30 days at a time and must therefore be extended on a monthly basis.

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