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US extends COVID public health emergency weeks after Biden declared pandemic ‘over’

Byharjotsinghjaspal

Oct 14, 2022
US extends COVID public health emergency weeks after Biden declared pandemic 'over'
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The U.S. extended the public health emergency status for the COVID-19 pandemic Thursday, weeks after President Biden’s controversial remarks declaring the pandemic was “over.” 

The move extends the order through Jan. 11, as health officials warn once more of a winter surge. 

In recent weeks, children have returned to schools, and state and local leaders have loosened or done away with coronavirus-related restrictions.

Across the U.S., daily cases, hospitalizations and deaths have fallen. 

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White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Ashish Jha speaks during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022. 
(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

According to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, there have been nearly 64,000 cases and over 650 deaths in the past day. 

The first public health emergency was declared in January 2020 and has been renewed every 90 days since.

Former President Trump declared a national emergency that year to free up $50 billion in federal aid.

President Biden speaks about infrastructure investments at the LA Metro, D Line (Purple) Extension Transit Project — Section 3 n Los Angeles Oct. 13, 2022. 

President Biden speaks about infrastructure investments at the LA Metro, D Line (Purple) Extension Transit Project — Section 3 n Los Angeles Oct. 13, 2022. 
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

The declaration of a public health emergency has enabled the emergency authorization of vaccines, testing and treatment.

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This year, however, as the Biden administration asks Congress for billions more in pandemic funding — announcing student debt relief and citing strains associated with the pandemic — Republicans have pushed back and pressed to end the emergency. 

DeMarcus Hicks, a recent graduate of nursing school working as a contractor with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, gives a person a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine booster shot, Dec. 20, 2021, in Federal Way, Wash. 

DeMarcus Hicks, a recent graduate of nursing school working as a contractor with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, gives a person a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine booster shot, Dec. 20, 2021, in Federal Way, Wash. 
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

The federal government stopped sending free COVID-19 tests in the mail, saying the program had run out of money.

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The administration has said it would provide 60 days notice before it ends the public health emergency.

Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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