Jun, 15, 2021

State Health Updates


  • Colorado – Governor Jared Polis announced that 12 of Colorado’s counties have passed President Biden’s goal to have 70 percent of the eligible population vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by Independence Day, July 4. This includes Denver County, the state’s most populous county.
  • New Jersey – Governor Phil Murphy signed legislation enabling the end of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency that has been in place since March 9, 2020. Immediately following the signing of the legislation, Governor Murphy signed Executive Order No. 244, ending the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. Under the legislation, the majority of executive orders that were issued pursuant to the Public Health Emergency will expire 30 days from signing of the executive order.
  • New York – Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the statewide seven-day average positivity rate has declined for 66 consecutive days to 0.47 percent. The state will being to close drive-through COVID-19 testing sites across New York state beginning today as a result of the low positivity rates and an 88 percent decrease in drive-through testing demand from January to May, 2021.
  • North Carolina – The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services announced more than 80 percent of adults 65 and older in the state have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
  • West Virginia – Governor Jim Justice announced that over 60.1 percent of all West Virginians who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine have now received at least one dose. To date, 936,453 of 1,557,837 vaccine-eligible West Virginians have received their first shot.
  • Wisconsin – The Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced that the COVID-19 Racial and Ethnic Disparities page has been updated to include vaccination data, in addition to existing data on COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths by group.

Other State Updates

  • Alaska – The Department of Health and Social Services announced that a statewide initiative implemented in six hospitals was associated with a 28 percent reduction in severe complications associated with high blood pressure and pregnancy. Over the past two years, the Alaska Perinatal Quality Collaborative partnered with the national Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health Program to implement best practices to improve outcomes for pregnant and birthing Alaskans with high blood pressure. 
  • Arizona – The state submitted an amendment to its current demonstration, Arizona Health Care Costs Containment System (AHCCCS). Arizona is seeking waiver and expenditure authority to improve health care delivery and health outcomes for AHCCCS members who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless by expanding existing evidence-based practices and reducing barriers to housing. The federal comment period is open through July 7, 2021.
  • Michigan – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) released for public comment its Title V Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Services Block Grant application, which includes its annual report for the program for FY 2020. Title V state action plans address a number of priority areas for the current five-year cycle (FY 2021-2025) to improve the health of the maternal and child population in Michigan including reducing low-risk cesarean delivery and promoting breastfeeding and safe infant sleep.
  • North Dakota – The North Dakota Department of Human Services, through its eight regional human service centers, has launched a comprehensive behavioral health crisis response system to provide help and support 24 hours a day, seven days a week to North Dakotans who are experiencing a mental health or substance use challenge or other emotional situation. The initiative also includes crisis response services for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities.
  • Oklahoma – Following the launch of enrollment on June 1, over 100,000 individuals have enrolled in the state’s Medicaid expansion which begins July 1, 2021. The Oklahoma Health Care Authority is tracking enrollment in SoonerCare via a dashboard.
  • Oregon – Oregon’s Medicaid Director, Lori Coyner, will leave her current role at the end of June to serve as primary leader to provide strategic guidance in the development of Oregon’s next 1115 Medicaid waiver agreement with the federal government. Dana Hittle, who for the past two years has served as Deputy Medicaid Director, will serve as the Oregon Health Authority’s interim Medicaid Director.
  • Washington – The Health Care Authority is seeking request for proposals from qualified vendors to aid the Compact of Free Association (COFA) Islander programs. HCA is seeking vendors interested in providing multilingual and culturally appropriate outreach, education, and enrollment assistance to Washington residents from the COFA nations of the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of Marshall Islands.
  • West Virginia – The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources announced the Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care designation for West Virginia child care providers. The initiative is a voluntary program open to all licensed child care centers, registered facilities, and family child care providers. The designation is designed to support child care providers in offering critical support for breastfeeding mothers, who often return to work during their baby’s first year of life with limited or no support.