Governor Stitt issues executive order to protect state first responders

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Emergency 911 Scene

This is an emergency scene including both a fire engine and an ambulance. (Stock image/Getty)

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Governor Kevin Stitt issued Executive Order 2020-13, so first responders who work for state agencies will receive guaranteed paid time off if they contract COVID-19.

“Our first responders put their lives on the line every day to protect their fellow Oklahomans,” said Gov. Kevin Stitt. “There’s no opportunity to work from home in these jobs, so they need our support. I also encourage cities and counties across the state to provide the same benefits to their first responders.”

“I commend Governor Stitt’s quick action in addressing the needs of our first responders,” said Secretary of Public Safety Chip Keating. “Our first responders personify the Oklahoma Standard through their courage and compassion during this unprecedented crisis.”

Executive Order 2020-13 also does the following:

  • Removes barriers that will allow more medical professionals to be on the front lines by encouraging licensing boards to ease requirements on physician assistants, nurse practitioners and retired physicians.
  • Encourages the boards to increase opportunities for students and recent graduates who are not yet fully licensed to practice.
  • Allows closed health care facilities to be re-opened and remove regulatory burdens that would create lag time in getting bed space to treat patients.
  • Allows stretcher vans and stretcher aid vans to assist with emergencies and operate anywhere in the state.

“It is very important to me to break down the geographic silos that limit stretcher vans from operating anywhere in the state,” said Gov. Stitt. “Right now, ambulances and stretcher vans are limited by arbitrary geographic and population-based limits that do nothing but limit the services people in rural Oklahoma can receive. Now is not the time for burdensome regulations.”

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