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Newsom Issues Regional Stay-At-Home Order Based on ICU Capacity

December 4, 2020 at 8:38 pm

Map of COVID regions

Map of the state's five regions for the stay-at-home order.

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a regional stay-at-home order on Thursday based on intensive care unit capacity. Restrictions will go into effect in places with less than 15% ICU availability, and will remain in place for at least three weeks until ICU capacity frees up.

The stay-at-home order prohibits all private gatherings, closes most businesses with the exception of critical infrastructure, and requires masks and distancing in all public settings. Restaurants will revert to takeout-only, retail will be limited to indoors at 20% capacity, and places of worship will be restricted to outdoor services.

State guidelines regarding K-12 schools will remain the same. Schools that have already opened will be able to stay open. However, since San Joaquin County (along with most of the state) is still in the purple tier, additional schools will not be able to return to in-person classes until the county has been in the red tier for two weeks.

The state has been divided into five regions (Northern California, Bay Area, Greater Sacramento, San Joaquin Valley, and Southern California) that will activate the stay-at-home order separately when their ICU capacities dip below 15%.

Each region’s current ICU bed availability is:

Northern California (Del Norte, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Lassen, Mendocino, Modoc, Shasta, Siskiyou, Tehama, Trinity): 18.6%

Bay Area (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma): 25.4%

Greater Sacramento (Alpine, Amador, Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Sierra, Sutter, Yolo, Yuba): 22%

San Joaquin Valley (Calaveras, Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, San Benito, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare, Tuolumne): 19.7%

Southern California (Imperial, Inyo, Los Angeles, Mono, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura): 20.6%

Newsom said regions were expected to hit 15% “as early as the next day or two and as late as the next week or so.” County officials will have 24 hours to implement the stay-at-home order if it is triggered.

Health officers from the counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Santa Clara, San Francisco, and the city of Berkeley said on Friday that they would institute the stay-at-home order this weekend, instead of waiting for hospitals to hit 15%.

Much of the state is already under a curfew from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. The ICU capacity of the San Joaquin Valley is currently 19.7%, and could dip low enough to trigger the stay-at-home order within the next couple of days.