The Biden administration is preparing to end the COVID-19 emergency designation after previously extending it multiple times, according to Politico.
The administration plans to extend the emergency designation by 90 days before the renewal period ends Wednesday, but aim to end the designation as soon as April, three people with knowledge of the matter told Politico. The emergency designation has been renewed 11 times since the start of the pandemic, and the Biden administration will need to alert states and health industry representatives at least 60 days before the end of the designation.
The eleventh renewal will run until April, but the Biden administration could implement another short term extension if more time is needed, according to Politico. If the administration intends to end the designation in April without an additional extension, officials could begin informing states and health industry representatives of their plans by February.
A spokesperson for the Health and Human Services Department (HHS) told Politico that no decision on ending the public health emergency has been made.
“We will provide a 60-day notice to states before any possible termination or expiration,” the spokesperson said. (RELATED: Biden Declares ‘The Pandemic Is Over’)
If the Biden administration does decide to remove the emergency designation, COVID-19 response would remain a priority for the administration, Biden health officials told Politico. The White House COVID-19 team is now debating whether they will reduce staff after the designation is ended or keep it intact until the end of the year, two people with knowledge of the matter told Politico.
The White House did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.
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