Governor Pritzker announces state will follow U.S. lead in ending public health emergency
By Josh Bootsma
LANSING, Ill. (February 1, 2023) – Nearly three years after declaring COVID-19 a public health emergency on March 9, 2020, the State of Illinois has announced it will end its disaster proclamation.
Set to take effect on May 11, the end of the proclamation falls in step with the federal government’s decision to do the same. The disaster proclamation formalized emergency procedures and allowed Illinois agencies and their partners to deploy resources during the public health threat.
According to a state press release, local partners benefitted from the disaster proclamation in the following ways:
- Allowing federal reimbursement for state response costs.
- Allowing use of State Disaster Relief Fund, covering direct state costs and reimbursements to Illinois National Guard and mutual aid groups.
- Allowing use of the state’s mutual aid network, groups of public safety response professionals — including hundreds of health care providers and management professionals, law enforcement officers, fire fighters, emergency medical technicians and disaster response professionals — that are available to deploy to areas of shortage.
- Authorizing the Governor to activate Illinois National Guard reservists, some of whom were doctors and nurses and served on the front lines of the pandemic response.
- Allowing expedited procurement should it be necessary.
- Authorizing additional executive actions as needed to protect public health and safety.
“Since COVID-19 first emerged nearly three years ago, my administration has worked diligently alongside the federal government to battle this once-in-a-generation pandemic by following scientific and medical guidance to support frontline workers and save lives. Our state’s disaster proclamation and executive orders enabled us to use every resource at our disposal from building up testing capacity and expanding our healthcare workforce to supporting our vaccine rollout and mutual aid efforts,” said Governor JB Pritzker.