ACLA and 15 Leading National Health Care Organizations Urge Extension of COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Declaration
Washington, D.C. – The American Clinical Laboratory Association (ACLA) today joined 15 national health care organizations in a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) urging an extension of the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Citing both the ongoing risk of new COVID-19 variants and the uptick in case rates across the country, ACLA and the other organizations, including AARP, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, the American Hospital Association, and the American Medical Association, stressed vigilance. The letter states, “Advancements in surveillance have observed rapid variant mutations and while public health experts acknowledge that current variants are not leading to excessive hospitalizations at this time, they also assert that new variants absolutely could.”
The letter goes on to highlight some of the flexibilities under the public health emergency that have been central to supporting patient care and helping the health system adapt as the pandemic evolves, including protecting Americans’ access to vaccines, testing, and treatments, and the ability for health care providers to quickly increase capacity to test and treat patients.
“As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, the public health emergency declaration is key to ensuring the health system as a whole remains prepared to help all Americans navigate the ongoing pandemic including through robust access to tests, treatments, and vaccines, and that those on the frontlines are able to swiftly respond to meet patient needs,” said Susan Van Meter, ACLA President.
To view the full letter, click here.
The American Clinical Laboratory Association (ACLA) is the national trade association representing leading laboratories that deliver essential diagnostic health information to patients and providers. ACLA members are at the forefront of driving diagnostic innovation to meet the country’s evolving health care needs and provide vital clinical laboratory tests that identify and prevent infectious, acute and chronic disease. ACLA works to advance the next generation of health care delivery through policies that expand access to lifesaving testing services.