(TN government press release) Tuesday, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee signed Executive Order Nos. 36 and 37, extending the state of emergency declaration from May 18, 2020 to June 30, 2020, in order to extend certain provisions facilitating the State’s continued response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Executive Order No. 36 consolidates provisions from Executive Order Nos. 15, 19, 20, 24, 28, and 32 into one order, while extending and in some cases expanding those provisions, and Executive Order No. 37 extends Executive Order No. 26. The extensions will ensure continued:
Broad access to telehealth services;
Increased opportunities for people to easily join the healthcare workforce;
Easier access to unemployment benefits;
Supply chain and price gouging protections;
Extended deadlines and suspended inspection requirements to avoid unnecessary person-to-person contact;
Increased opportunities to work remotely where appropriate; and
Ability to remotely notarize and witness legal documents through electronic means.
Provisions from prior Executive Orders that will not continue:
Expanded scope of practice provisions for nurses and physician assistants. These provisions, which originally appeared in Executive Order Nos. 15 and 28, have served their purpose to flatten the curve in Tennessee. These provisions are not necessary to continue treating and containing COVID-19 at the current time; however, we will continue to monitor conditions to determine whether these provisions should be implemented again.
Physical, occupational and speech therapy via telemedicine for workers’ compensation recipients are now reimbursable under federal guidelines, so the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation no longer needs an executive order to offer this benefit.