The bay area tightens COVID-19 restrictions; Santa Clara County orders travel quarantine

As the COVID-19 epidemic worsens rapidly in California, San Francisco and San Mateo counties moved on Saturday to the state’s most restrictive level, forcing the closure of indoor gyms and movie theaters.

At the same time, Santa Clara County has issued its own tightened COVID-19 rules, which are stricter in some respects than those issued by Los Angeles County on Friday. Santa Clara County policy requires people to be quarantined for 14 days if they return from journeys longer than 150 miles, hotels will only be open for essential travel or isolation and quarantine, and non-essential retail facilities will be limited to 10% of indoor capacity. from the current 25% ceiling.

The remaining steps in COVID-19-related nationwide hospitalizations have tripled in the past month, dangerously approaching the summer peak.

According to data released by the State Department of Public Health on Saturday, 6,972 people in national hospitals were infected with the coronavirus on Friday. On October 25, that number was 2,254. The current peak of hospital care is 7170, which will be set on July 22nd.

In all, more than 1.18 million people became infected with the coronavirus and more than 19,000 died in California.

San Francisco has been able to avoid the state’s most restrictive “purple” level, but the number of new coronavirus cases in the Gulf has continued to rise in recent days. In just the last six weeks, the number of cases of coronavirus per week has more than quadrupled: from 200 per week in mid-October to about 900 per week now.

An analysis released by the Times on Friday found that most California counties are suffering from the worst daily new coronavirus cases in the pandemic, surpassing even the summer wave that forced officials to withdraw the state’s first reopening.

The State Department of Public Health announced Saturday that six counties have entered the narrowest level of the state’s reopening framework: the counties of San Francisco, San Mateo, Plumas, Lake, Modoc and Calaveras. Three counties fell into the red layer: Mariposa, Inyo, and Alpine.

The changes mean that 51 of California’s 58 counties are now at the purple level, accounting for 99% of the state’s population, meaning 38.8 million of California’s 39.1 million people live. Crimson counties should close the indoor operation of restaurants, gyms and houses of worship.

Purple-grade counties are subject to the state’s limited night-time home stay policy, which prohibits all gatherings from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. take food taken away with members of the household and work in basic industries such as preparing meals.

The only counties not listed in purple are Marin, Amador, Plumas, Inyo, Mariposa, Mono and Alpine, which are in the red, i.e. the second most restrictive layer, and the Sierra, which is the orange level, the third most restrictive level. .

San Francisco has already ordered the closure of indoor restaurant restaurants from Nov. 14. Indoor operation of houses of worship, movie theaters, gyms, museums, aquariums and zoos is prohibited from noon on Sunday. Outdoor carousels and ferris wheels need to close and insignificant retail is limited to 25% of capacity.

Schools already open for education will continue to offer indoor learning, and elementary schools that have not yet opened may continue to apply for exemptions to reopen indoor operations, San Francisco officials said. Middle and high schools that have not opened may not be open to indoor education, but may apply to provide only outdoor learning.

San Mateo County is ordering the indoor meal to take effect on Sunday after officials there reported an 85% increase in coronavirus cases from October to November.

“We haven’t seen numbers like this in a long time, and we really need to reverse this incredibly worrying trend,” said county chief Mike Callagy. “It’s important to note that we can reverse the trend as long as we follow common sense health and safety practices.”

Santa Clara County, home of Silicon Valley, on Saturday issued its own mandatory travel policy, which “strongly discourages leisure and essential travel and requires those entering the county to be quarantined for 14 days after returning more than 150 miles”. . These new guidelines will take effect on Monday and run until at least December 21st.

“We are seriously concerned about COVID-19 cases and the ongoing pace of hospital care,” Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County Health Officer, said in a statement.

“The number of patients admitted to hospital with COVID-19 in our county has doubled in the past few weeks and there is a danger that we will soon exceed our hospital capacity if current trends continue,” Cody said. “In this critical period when COVID-19 is spreading in our community, I urge all residents to be careful and minimize contact with anyone outside their immediate household as much as possible.”

Hospital treatment for COVID-19 in Santa Clara County has tripled in the past month and now exceeds the record for the summer. Officials say they are worried about reaching hospitals.

Santa Clara County issued new orders on Saturday that further limit indoor non-essential retail facilities to 10% of capacity, a much stricter limit than the state’s purple limit, which limits these locations to 25% of capacity. .

Basic retail in Santa Clara County, like grocery stores and pharmacies, is limited to 25% of capacity, which is more stringent than the 50% allowed by the state.

According to other statements in Santa Clara County:

• All establishments open to the public should set up a “metering system” to ensure that capacity limits are not exceeded, for example, people working at the entrance follow occupants.
• Outdoor gatherings of religious services and political demonstrations are currently limited to a maximum of 100 people.
• All leisure activities that are in physical contact or in close proximity to people outside your household are prohibited.
• The rooms are closed.
• Hotels and other accommodation should only be used for essential travel and to facilitate isolation or quarantine.

Health officials from the counties of San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin, as well as the city of Berkeley, supported the strict new rules in Santa Clara County.

Health officials in other Bay Bay counties said that although they had not yet reached the same crisis situation as Santa Clara County, “they should soon take similar steps to preserve the remaining regional hospital capacity,” they said. in a joint statement late Saturday.

Hospital care for people with COVID-19 has tripled in the past month, from 262 to 759 on Friday, officials said.

“What we see in the South Gulf today will soon be seen throughout the Gulf. These actions will help slow the spread of COVID in Santa Clara County and beyond, ”said Dr. Nicholas Moss, Alameda County Health Officer, in a statement.

Los Angeles County also announced stricter coronavirus rules on Friday. From Monday, basic retail stores will be limited to 35% of capacity, up from the current 50% cap.

Essential retail stores, shopping malls, libraries and body care facilities such as hairdressing salons, hairdressers, nail salons, piercings, solariums and massage therapies are limited to 20% of capacity; they can currently operate at 25% of capacity.