PHOENIX — The Governor’s Office announced Thursday afternoon that Gov. Doug Ducey rescinded three of his executive orders related to elective surgeries at hospitals and COVID-19-related safety protocols at long-term care facilities.
In April 2020, Gov. Ducey issued an executive order that allowed hospitals, dental offices, and other medical providers to resume some elective procedures as long as they received approval from the Arizona Department of Health Services and could maintain COVID-19 safety procedures.
That order requiring ADHS approval has been rescinded.
Gov. Ducey also rescinded another executive order from April that required long-term care facilities to follow CDC guidelines as it related to the pandemic, such as symptom checks, and wearing personal protective equipment, and to have electronic communications for people if in-person visits were restricted.
It is still up to each individual facility or company to decide if and when to allow in-person visits at their locations.
In the last few weeks, Gov. Ducey has also lifted restrictions on restaurant and business capacities, as well as requirements to wear masks and maintain social distancing, citing the increase in COVID-19 vaccinations and a decrease in positive COVID-19 cases.
“With nearly three and a half million vaccine doses administered across Arizona, we’re on track to fighting off the pandemic and returning to normal,” said Governor Ducey in a statement. “At the beginning of the pandemic, we took necessary measures to protect vulnerable populations and all Arizonans. Now the vaccine is out far and wide, and we have much better knowledge of the virus than we did before. I’m grateful to the hospitals, medical professionals and long-term care facilities that prioritized Arizonans’ safety, and I’m looking forward to scaling back on measures that are no longer needed.”
Ducey’s order Thursday provides hospitals with the flexibility to conduct elective surgeries.
He said the state can now also help facilitate additional visitation as well as off-site visits for long-term care residents without the need for quarantine upon return.
Arizona on Thursday reported the number of people who have received at least one dose of vaccine passed 30% of the state’s population.
The number of COVID-19 cases is declining around Arizona.
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