Massachusetts Department of Public Health Rescinds Public Health Emergency Orders for COVID-19

November 28, 2022

On November 14, 2022, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) issued Public Health Emergency Order No. 2022-21, which immediately rescinded other public health emergency orders that were previously issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. DPH stated in Order No. 2022-21 that its rationale for rescinding these orders at this time is that Massachusetts “has implemented a sustained, robust, and effective public health response to COVID-19, including efforts that have resulted in nation-leading rates of vaccination and access to therapeutics.” DPH further noted that certain of these orders have become unnecessary as the state legislature “has also incorporated the provisions of a number of these Orders in statute.”  

As a result of Order No. 2022-21, the following orders no longer have any effect: Order Nos. 2021-01-E, G, H, I, J, K, and L; 2021-03; 2021-04; 2021-09; 2021-12; 2022-01; 2022-04; 2022-05; 2022-06; 2022-09. These orders concerned a broad spectrum of requirements that were intended to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 at the time of their release. They generally pertained to data reporting, testing access and billing, licensure and ownership of healthcare practitioners and facilities, vaccination and testing of healthcare practitioners, and vaccine possession and storage. Notably, as of November 22, 2022, the Massachusetts COVID-19 Public Health Emergency website states that several other orders are “due to be rescinded by the end of December 2022.”