Leveraging Gubernatorial Executive Authorities to Maximize Scope of Practice for the Health Care Workforce During an Influenza Pandemic Roundtable

An influenza pandemic has a much broader impact on the population than the typical seasonal flu. Pandemics usually last
longer and may lead to an increased number of affected persons, more severe complications, and strains on the health care



This roadmap is intended to help governors and their senior staff:

  • Identify the appropriate stakeholders to coordinate a response;
  • Identify state health care workforce goals and strategies that address challenges that may arise during a pandemic event using an influenza pandemic as a model;
  • Outline key policy and logistical considerations for government officials; and
  • Determine specific policies that modify scope of practice, such as allowing nurses and pharmacists to dispense and administer medical countermeasures and addressing the use of alternate care sites, such as mobile clinics and schools, during a pandemic event.

The policy considerations offered in this roadmap may be addressed via gubernatorial executive orders (EOs). Issuing EOs are one strategy to expedite policy changes and can facilitate prompt delivery of care. Prompt response is especially important in a pandemic event when antivirals need to be given within the first 48 hours of illness. Some states may not need an EO to address these policies and thus, may use another executive authority.

While this roadmap specifically focuses on responding to an influenza pandemic, many of the policy options may be considered in preparation for other pandemic events.

This roadmap does not provide legal advice and should not substitute for the advice of your general counsel.