New York: Gov. NY State of Health extends #COVID19 Special Enrollment Period thru 6/15

On March 16th, New York's ACA exchange, NY State of Health, announced that they'd be launching a COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period with a deadline of April 15th. As that date approached, in the middle of the worst pandemic to hit New York State 100 years, the deadline was extended out by a month, through May 15th.

Now as that deadline approaches, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo has ordered the COVID-19 SEP to be bumped out by another month:

Amid Ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic, Governor Cuomo Outlines Additional Guidelines for When Regions Can Re-Open

  • State Will Monitor Four Core Factors to Determine if a Region Can Re-Open: Number of New Infections, Health Care Capacity, Diagnostic Testing Capacity and Contact Tracing Capacity
  • Outlines New Safety Precautions Each Business Must Put in Place Upon Re-Opening
  • More Than One Million New Yorkers Have Been Tested for COVID-19 to Date
  • New York's National Guard Has Made Nearly 300,000 Testing Kits to Collect Samples
  • Announces Special Enrollment through the Marketplace will Remain Open Through June 15, 2020
  • Confirms 2,538 Additional Coronavirus Cases in New York State - Bringing Statewide Total to 318,953; New Cases in 45 Counties

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today outlined additional guidelines for when regions can re-open. The state will monitor four core factors to determine if a region can re-open:

  • New Infections: Based on guidelines from the CDC, regions must have at least 14 days of decline in total net hospitalizations and deaths on a 3-day rolling average. In regions with few COVID cases, the region cannot exceed 15 net new total hospitalizations or 5 new deaths on a 3-day rolling average. In order to monitor the potential spread of infection in a region, a region must have fewer than two new COVID patients admitted per 100,000 residents per day.
  • Health Care Capacity: Every region must have the health care capacity to handle a potential surge in cases. Regions must have at least 30 percent total hospital and ICU beds available. This is coupled with the new requirement that hospitals have at least 90 days of personal protective equipment stockpiled.
  • Diagnostic Testing Capacity: Each region must have the capacity to conduct 30 diagnostic tests for every 1,000 residents per month. The state is rapidly expanding capacity statewide to help all regions meet this threshold.
  • Contact Tracing Capacity: Regions must have a baseline of 30 contact tracers for every 100,000 residents, and additional tracers based on the projected number of cases in the region. The state is currently building an army of contact tracers with Mayor Bloomberg to meet the needs of each region statewide.

Governor Cuomo also outlined which industries and businesses can open in each phase of the state's re-opening plan. Businesses considered "more essential" with inherent low risks of infection in the workplace and to customers will be prioritized, followed by other businesses considered "less essential" or those that present a higher risk of infection spread. Regions must not open attractions or businesses that would draw a large number of visitors from outside the local area.

Re-opening is not going to happen statewide all at once - New York has diverse regions and those regions have different circumstances.

The Governor also outlined new safety precautions that each business must put in place upon re-opening to help lower the risk of spreading the virus. Businesses will be required to:

  • Adjust workplace hours and shift design as necessary to reduce density in the workplace;
  • Enact social distancing protocols;
  • Restrict non-essential travel for employees;
  • Require all employees and customers to wear masks if in frequent contact with others;
  • Implement strict cleaning and sanitation standards;
  • Enact a continuous health screening process for individuals to enter the workplace;
  • Continue tracing, tracking and reporting of cases; and
  • Develop liability processes.

The Governor also announced that more than one million New Yorkers have already been tested for COVID-19 to date.

The Governor also announced New York's National Guard has made nearly 300,000 testing kits to collect samples, 60,000 of which are being sent to labs and hospitals across New York State.

The Governor also announced the special enrollment period through the NY State of Health Health Plan Marketplace will remain open through June 15, 2020.