CALIFORNIA STATUS UPDATE
The California Department of Public Health reports:
- Confirmed cases: 45,031 (As of April 28).
- 1,809 deaths
- 22 state and county labs processing tests for COVID-19.
- Click here for complete information on coronavirus, unemployment, and more from the state of California.
- Coronavirus cases rise at Turlock nursing home: At least 94 people are positive for the coronavirus at a Turlock nursing home. The Turlock Nursing and Rehabilitation Center confirmed 66 residents and 28 staff members tested positive for the virus. 132 test results are pending. Three additional residents who tested positive have died, which brings the total death toll at the facility to five.
- Residents of skilled nursing facilities make up roughly 33% of all COVID-19 related deaths in California, a new report by the California Department of Public Health shows. Resident deaths in California currently sit at 578 as of April 27.
- California’s governor says school children could return to their classrooms as soon as July. Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday that no official decisions have been made but an earlier school year may be needed due to learning losses for students as schools closed to address coronavirus. Most schools and classrooms have been closed since March, when Newsom issued a statewide stay-at-home order. Districts and families have struggled to adapt to at-home learning. He says starting the new school year earlier would make up for some of that lost time.
- Three million surgical masks have arrived in California and more are on the way as part of a major deal cut by Gov. Gavin Newsom for 200 million masks a month to protect against the coronavirus. Newsom's finance director told lawmakers Tuesday the state will make a payment of $104.7 million for the first shipment. Newsom in early April announced the deal for a massive haul of N95 and surgical masks from Chinese manufacturer BYD. A spokesman for the Newsom adminstration couldn't immediately say how many of each type of mask are expected under the new payment.
- California Maritime State University has received permission to resume limited in-person classes this semester. The San Francisco Chronicle reports the academy also hopes to send 350 students and staff on its annual summer training cruise, which is a graduation requirement for cadets. Cal Maritime is a specialized campus of California State University offering licensed and non-licensed degree programs serving the maritime industry, including training ships’ officers. The governor's office says the administration has set strict health and safety conditions that must be met for the academy to resume in-person instruction.
- Six Bay Area counties, and the city of Berkeley, plan to announce the extension of their shelter in place orders through May. The original order was set to expire May 3, 2020. The new order will also include easing of "specific restrictions for a small number of lower-risk activities" on a limited basis.
- The El Dorado County Public Health Department announced it will let its stay-at-home directive expire at the end of the month, Thursday, April 30. In a press release, Dr. Nancy Williams, El Dorado County Public Health Officer, said the county's directive has been successful, only seeing 43 confirmed and five active cases as of April 27, 2020. Residents will still be asked to follow Gov. Newsom's stay-at-home order for the state. Nonessential travel to the unincorporated portion of the Lake Tahoe Basin remains in effect, as does the county’s emergency ordinance allowing administrative fines for visitors to short-term rentals. Williams also said she will, "remain vigilant and am prepared to reinstate County-level restrictions if necessary to protect our health care systems and our residents."
- Gov. Gavin Newsom is expected to give us a better look at his plans to let businesses open their doors again in California at Tuesday's press conference. His plan is for businesses to slowly reopen, which is part of the state's six-point plan. The governor said during his daily press conference on Monday he will break down the fifth point in the state's plan at an upcoming press conference, which involves making sure businesses, schools, and other public spaces can continue physical distancing. Closing Monday's press conference, Newsom's message even came with some optimism for Californians hoping the state reopens sooner rather than later. “The hope and expectation is that we'll be in a position in a number of weeks to make meaningful modifications."
OUR MISSION: FACTS NOT FEAR
(embed facts not fears video)
According to the CDC, coronavirus (COVID-19) is a family of viruses that is spreadable from person to person. Coronavirus is believed to have been first detected in a seafood market in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. If someone is sick with coronavirus, the symptoms they may show include mild to severe respiratory illness, cough, and difficulty breathing.
Currently, there is no vaccine; however, the CDC suggests the following precautions, along with any other respiratory illness:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds.
WHY HEALTH OFFICIALS ARE SO CONCERNED
Some people have compared the low overall death toll to the flu's high annual death toll in the United States as a reason not to be concerned about COVID-19, however, doctors and health officials are concerned for three main reasons:
- Some people have built up immunity to the flu, but few have immunity to COVID-19 version of coronavirus.
- Both the flu and COVID-19 are spread by droplets, but COVID-19 might be spread in the air. Scientists are researching exactly how COVID-19 spreads.
- The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public where social distancing measures would be difficult to maintain, like at a grocery store or pharmacy.
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