Pharmacists may now dispense emergency refills of prescriptions for up to 60 days worth of supply for patients as part of a new Executive Order signed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer. The order takes effect immediately and ends on April 22, with potential for renewal if needed. The order requires insurers to cover the emergency refills and allows pharmacists to dispense treatments to those suffering from COVID-19 infection, according to government approved protocol. The order does not include controlled substances. The purpose of the order is to “ease a burden on seniors and families worried about maintaining a supply of medication for themselves or their children,” according to Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Chief Medical Executive and Chief Deputy Director for Health at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. The effort is part of the state’s Stay Home, Stay Safe mandate and is aimed at patients and their caretakers who may be forced to go out to get medications, possibly increasing their likelihood of exposure to the COVID-19 virus. The order also allows pharmacists to use their discretion to substitute therapeutically equivalent medications without prescriber approval if there are critical shortages.