US Extends COVID Public Health Emergency

Photo: abc

The Facts

  • On Thursday, the Biden admin. extended the COVID public health emergency through Jan. 11. The move comes after Biden declared the pandemic "over" last month during an interview, though officials are warning of a possible surge in cases over the winter.

  • The public health emergency — first declared by former Pres. Trump in January 2020 and since renewed every 90 days — expanded Medicaid to those who would otherwise be ineligible, opened telehealth, or remote, services to Medicaid, and enabled emergency authorization of vaccines.

The Spin

Republican narrative

Biden declared the pandemic over, yet his admin. continues to abuse the emergency declaration — renewed 11 times — allowing the government to bloat its budget, stifle private insurance competition, and steal public health policy power away from the states. This government overreach must end, and federal emergency laws must be reconsidered.

Democratic narrative

COVID isn’t done with us, and the steady flow of cases and deaths proves it. Extending the emergency declaration keeps millions of potential COVID patients on Medicaid so doctors can treat them more easily. The order also allows Congress to provide funds needed for vaccines, tests, and other important COVID-related resources more easily. This is a logical option.

Nerd narrative

There's a 24% chance that any US state will re-implement a general indoor mask mandate before February 2023, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

Political split



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