Governor Phil Murphy on April 1, 2020 signed Executive Order No. 112, authorizing the Division of Consumer Affairs to temporarily reactivate the licenses of recently retired health care professionals and grant temporary licenses to doctors licensed in foreign countries.
The Executive Order also temporarily permits certain health care professionals to perform acts outside of their ordinary scope of practice and grants broad civil immunity to health care professionals and facilities providing services in support of New Jersey’s COVID-19 response efforts who are acting in good faith.
The State is working with hospital systems and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to expand bed capacities, reopen closed hospitals, and erect field medical stations to prepare for additional COVID-19 cases. Trained, experienced medical personnel are needed to ensure proper staffing which is why New Jersey has requested retired health care professionals join the response and support the State’s existing workforce.
The intent is to eliminate bureaucratic roadblocks through the Executive Order to quickly bring more health care professionals into the efforts to provide additional flexibility and protections for front line responders to aid in New Jersey’s response to COVID-19.
The Executive Order supplements the State’s existing health care workforce by:
- Authorizing the Division of Consumer Affairs to temporarily reactivate the licenses of healthcare professionals previously licensed in the State within the last five years. This will enable doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals who have recently retired or have allowed their licenses to lapse to temporarily reactivate their licenses.
- Authorizing the Division of Consumer Affairs to grant temporary medical licenses to doctors who are licensed and in good standing in foreign countries.
- Temporarily waiving certain scope of practice restrictions on Advanced Practice Nurses (APNs) related to physician collaboration, including a rule requiring that an APN enter into a joint protocol with a collaborating physician and a rule requiring APNs to obtain authorization from a collaborating physician in order to dispense narcotic drugs.
- Temporarily waiving certain scope of practice restrictions on Physician Assistants (PAs) related to physician supervision, including a rule requiring PAs to obtain physician authorization prior to prescribing a controlled dangerous substance.
This Executive Order took effect on April 1, 2020.