COVID-19 Surge Prompts Governor Newsom To Announce Stay-At-Home Order, Likely To Impact Sacramento County
Today Governor Gavin Newsom announced yet another pending stay-at-home order due to a surge in COVID-19 cases and a strained hospital system. The announcement came in a Thursday afternoon press conference. The order affects regions of the State where and when ICU (Intensive Care Unit) bed capacity drops below 15%. According to Newsom, the Greater Sacramento Region is expected to fall below the 15% limit this week, triggering the stay-at-home order in the area. The Greater Sacramento Region comprises Sacramento, Yolo, El Dorado, Placer, Sutter, Yuba, and Nevada counties. The new stay-at-home order restricts business activity, work, worship services, schools, and travel.
During the press conference, Governor Newsom spoke of the State’s surge capacity, pointing to some 11 facilities pre-positioned around the State and ready to receive patients. Sacramento’s Arco Sleep Train Arena is one such facility. In terms of PPE inventory, Newsom said California’s stockpile of masks exceeded the national stockpile by 40 million. In total, California has an inventory of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) 500 million units, including masks, gowns, gloves, and face shields. There are also over 21,000 ventilators available for use.
Yesterday, California detected more than 18,000 new cases of COVID-19. Over the last week, California averaged some 15,000 new cases, a record high. Weekly hospitalizations and ICU admissions are up 86% and 67%, respectively, according to the Governor. Sadly, over the last 2 weeks, over 1,000 Californians lost their lives due to the pandemic.
On Monday Governor Newsom announced new support for businesses, workers, parents, and renters struggling due to the pandemic. These include an automatic 3-month sales tax extension for taxpayers with less than $1M in sales, $500M in COVID relief fund grants up to $25,000 for small businesses and non-profits. Additionally, the government will grant $125M in low-interest loans for small businesses and $100M in hiring tax credits. Also, California expanded benefits for COVID-19-related sick leave, childcare for essential workers, workers’ compensation, along with testing and treatment for the uninsured. Likewise, this week California extended its eviction moratorium through February 1st, 2021, among a series of other housing related relief. All non-essential travel is also suspended for the duration for the order.
Despite the new restrictions, Governor Newsom encouraged Californians to stay active outdoors, but to do so safely.
“We want to encourage activity that’s not focused indoors but outdoors. We want you to exercise or go on a run with a partner in your household or in our State parks. There is light at the end of the tunnel. We are a few months away from real progress with the vaccine, with distribution, real accessibility, real availability.”
To learn more, visit https://covid19.ca.gov/.