Public Health Response to 7.0 Earthquake in Alaska on Nov. 30

Key Updates

  • On Dec. 3, Health and Human Services (HHS) secretary Alex Azar declared a public health emergency was put in place on Nov. 30 in Alaska due to earthquakes.
  • Presidential Major Disaster Declaration on Nov. 30
  • A 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck seven miles north of Anchorage, Ala. on Nov. 30. Hundreds of aftershocks have occurred since the initial earthquake, with several greater than 5.0 magnitude.
  • Healthcare facilities in the greater Anchorage area, including hospitals, assisted living centers, dialysis centers, and nursing homes sustained limited structural damage but are operational.
  • Anchorage Water and Wastewater Utility asked customers to boil water before consumption as a precaution.
  • Alaska transportation:
    • Glenn Highway was significantly damaged; the highway is open and has detours around damaged sections.
    • All airports are operational.
    • The Port of Anchorage is open; inbound commercial traffic pending completed damage assessments.
    • Several oil transmission pipelines in the area are shutdown as a precaution pending safety checks.
  • Blanket 1135 waivers have been approved and are being posted to www.cms.gov/emergency.The CMS Region 10 office can provide assistance to facilities seeking additional info or needing to apply for additional waivers.

Requests for Information

Please contact Critical Infrastructure Protection at cip@hhs.gov with any questions, concerns, or additional information.

Links and Resources

Consolidated Medicare FFS Emergency Q&A’s

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