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Connecticut Authorizes Out-of-State Health Care Practitioners to Render Assistance for Remainder of COVID-19 Pandemic

On July 14, 2020 Connecticut Governor Lamont issued Executive Order No. 7HHH, in which the Governor modified state law to enable the Commissioner of the Department of Public Health (DPH) to temporarily suspend licensure, registration and certification requirements for certain DPH-regulated practitioners for the duration of the state public health and civil preparedness emergency.  Notably, in that Executive Order, the Governor stated that “healthcare providers from outside Connecticut have greatly enhanced the provision of healthcare services in Connecticut during the COVID-19 pandemic and thereby fundamentally improved the state’s ability to protect public health at critical time.”

Following the issuance of Executive Order No. 7HHH, DPH Commissioner Deidre S. Gifford, M.D., promptly issued a new Order temporarily suspending the requirements for licensure, certification, or registration for the professions listed below for the duration of the COVID-19 public health and civil preparedness emergency in Connecticut.  The Order allows persons who are licensed (or certified or registered, as applicable) in another state or territory of the United States (or District of Columbia) to render temporary assistance in Connecticut within the scope of their licensure, certification or registration. The out-of-state practice allowance under the Order is subject to certain conditions, including that:

  • The practitioner only practice within the permitted professional scope of practice set forth under Connecticut law;

  • The practitioner maintain malpractice or another form of liability insurance in accordance with applicable requirements if the practitioner were licensed in Connecticut;

  • Any in-state business or medical entity contracting with an out-of-state practitioner practicing under the Order must verify the out-of-state practitioner’s credentials to ensure the individual is in good standing, and must verify the individual’s insurance;

  • Out-of-state practitioners enrolled in Medicaid or a fully insured commercial plan must accept Medicaid or in-network reimbursement as payment in full for services;

  • Out-of-state practitioners providing services to patients not covered by Medicaid or a fully insurance commercial plan must determine whether there is coverage for the services, and accept payment received from the applicable plan as payment in full without balance billing the patient. Where payment is not available, the practitioner is obligated to accept the Medicare rate as payment in full, and offer financial assistance where required by applicable law to uninsured patients and others based on inability to pay.

The professional practitioners covered by the DPH Order (identified by the applicable chapter of the Connecticut General Statutes) are:

  • 368d (Emergency Medical Services);

  • 370 (Medicine and Surgery);

  • 376 (Physical Therapists);

  • 376a (Occupational Therapist);

  • 376b (Alcohol and Drug Counselor);

  • 376c (Radiographer, Radiologic Technologist, Radiologist Assistant and Nuclear Medicine Technologist);

  • 378 (Nursing);

  • 378a (Nurse’s Aides);

  • 379 (Dentist);

  • 379a (Dental Hygienist);

  • 381a (Respiratory Care Practitioners);

  • 382a (Behavior Analyst);

  • 383 (Psychologists);

  • 383a (Marital and Family Therapists);

  • 383b (Clinical Social Workers and Master Social Workers);

  • 383c (Professional Counselors);

  • 383d (Genetic Counselor);

  • 383f (Music Therapist);

  • 383g (Art Therapist);

  • 384b (Dietician-Nutritionist);

  • 384d (Emergency Medical Services Personnel);

  • 399 (Speech and Language Pathologist); and

  • 400j (Pharmacy).

Copyright © 2021 Robinson & Cole LLP. All rights reserved.National Law Review, Volume X, Number 211

About this Author

Conor Duffy Cybersecurity Attorney

Conor Duffy is a member of the firm's Health Law Group and its Data Privacy + Cybersecurity Team. He advises hospitals, physician groups, community providers, and other health care entities on general corporate matters and health law issues. He also counsels clients on what measures are needed to safeguard data and patient information.


Conor provides legal counsel to health care clients on various regulatory matters, such as Medicare and Medicaid program compliance, federal fraud and abuse laws, and the Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act...