Gubernatorial Actions to Support Medical Surge Capacity

The coronavirus and COVID-19 are spreading across the United States and experts predict significant disruption to the U.S. health care system. With hospitals typically operating at or near 100 percent capacity – particularly during flu season – the availability of facilities, equipment, personnel, and supplies can be limited. Federal- and state-level declarations of emergency provide governors a broad range of authorities to assist the health care system in meeting the surge in demand. The following are a selection of actions that may be within a governor’s authority in various instances and settings.

All NGA COVID-19 memos can be found here, or visit COVID-19: What You Need To Know for current information on actions States/Territories are taking to address the COVID-19 pandemic; as well as advocacy, policy, and guidance documents for protecting public health and the economy.