Dunleavy: New mandate means doctors can see patients starting Monday


Gov. Mike Dunleavy issued Health Mandate 15 today, which supersedes some of his previous orders that had ratcheted down medical care in Alaska for almost all conditions except COVID-19.

It’s not exactly a roll-back of Health Mandate 5, but close.

Starting Monday, a wide range of health practitioners, including acupuncturists, massage therapists, occupational therapists, and even religious healers will be able to return to their normal practices, while observing strict health protocols to keep patients, staff, and themselves safe from the contagion that has spread across the globe from Wuhan, China.

Must Read Alaska sources said that Monday was chosen as the target date because medical clinics need to staff up and ensure they have enough personal protective gear, and also be ready to follow the specific protocols that come with Health Mandate 15.

Providers, according to this new mandate, should continue to use telemedicine, and phone consultations when possible, and create physical barriers between providers and patients. They must employ universal masking procedures for all employees, including front desk staff. All patients need to be screened for COVID-19 symptoms, recent travel, or recent exposure to COVID-19. To the extent possible, doctors should begin testing all admitted patients for the coronavirus.

Lobbies and waiting rooms will need to be marked for social distancing and limited occupancy.

The governor emphasized that Alaskans need to be able to be treated for their illnesses that are not COVID-19. Fewer than 300 people in the state have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, but there are only 187 active cases. Nine Alaskans have died, seven of those died in the state.

“The suspension of non-essential procedures and health care have been beneficial in slowing the spread of the disease. The benefits of suspension must also be balanced with delayed health care and other health outcomes,” Dunleavy wrote in his latest health mandate.

On May 4, the restrictions on other elective medical procedures will ease for health care services that cannot be delayed without posing a significant risk to quality of life.

The full description of the new health mandates are at this link.


    • Probably means that more people who are now alive will stay that way a while longer, assuming they have health care insurance.

  1. Gov Dunleavy lets the Rich go back to work…and leaves the rest of us hanging. His new found power to control the population has gone to his head….reminds me of Hitler

    • You have no idea about Hitler except what you learned on the history channel. If he was “like Hitler” you would be dead by now. So would your dog. Leave history for the professionals.

  2. If you are in pain, and immediate care could get you out of pain, or, if you have a procedure you need done, that might catch or prevent more serious illness- the prior mandate in a lot of cases made that hard to do, and this makes it easier. While I would like to see more sectors open, this is a good thing and a start to even more good things as we peel these restrictions back.

  3. I think those folks should have been able to decide their own fate, not the state. Most would have gone out of business or relocated to other states had he not done this.
    However, given the $10/bbl WTI price of oil this morning the state’s economy just tanked, big time.
    Geissel and Edgmon have destroyed the economy by refusing to pay up the PFDs.
    The next step is to end it and then to get into the PF–rainy day, big time. Expect to see that during the Legislative Council session this summer.
    Looks like President Trump’s confidence in OPEC holding the line was misplaced.

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