New Jersey Governor Philip D. Murphy signed Executive Order (EO) No. 109 on March 23, 2020, suspending all “elective surgeries and invasive procedures performed on adults that are scheduled to take place after 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 27.” If any surgeries or procedures already are scheduled for after this date and time, the facilities are instructed “to immediately notify all patients and providers . . . that these operations cannot proceed as scheduled.”
Under this EO, an “elective” surgery or invasive procedure is as “any surgery or invasive procedure that can be delayed without undue risk to the current or future health of the patient as determined by the patient’s treating physician or dentist.” This EO applies to all medical and dental surgeries and procedures. This restriction does not apply to the administration of vaccines. Nor does it not “limit access to the full range of family planning services and procedures, including terminations of pregnancies.”
The EO requires hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers to “establish written guidelines to ensure adherence to the provisions of this Order,” and provide a copy to the Department of Health. The guidelines must include “a process for consultation with the treating provider about a designation that the surgery or invasive procedure is elective under the terms of this Order.”
Additionally, the EO requires that “[a]ny business or non-hospital health care facility, including but not limited to dental facilities, construction facilities, research facilities, office-based healthcare or veterinary practices, and institutions of higher learning, in possession of [personal protective equipment], ventilators, respirators, or anesthesia machines that are not required for the provision of critical health care services [to] undertake an inventory of such supplies and send that information to the State by no later than 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 27, 2020.” According to the order, “[t]he Office of Emergency Management shall establish a process by which entities subject to this provision can submit this information.”
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