FEMA extends and modifies scarce PPE allocation order, issues DPA voluntary agreement text

The Federal Emergency Management Agency Aug. 10 issued a temporary final rule allocating certain health and medical resources exclusively for domestic use to ensure front line healthcare workers’ needs are met during the COVID-19 pandemic. The policy, which will remain in effect through Dec. 31, states that FEMA can review and hold for domestic use the following PPE items in the event of their attempted export: surgical N-95 respirators, surgical masks, nitrile surgical and exam gloves, and level 3 and 4 surgical gowns and surgical isolation gowns.

In other news, FEMA today published the text of a voluntary agreement under the Defense Production Act that would permit private sector organizations to coordinate their efforts with other organizations to produce and distribute critical health care resources during the COVID-19 pandemic, including PPE, pharmaceuticals, respiratory devices, vaccines, raw materials, supplies and medical devices. The AHA in May encouraged FEMA to ensure such an agreement took into account the full breadth of COVID-19 medical supply and equipment needs, and to do so in consultation with hospital and health system stakeholders.