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'Everything is on the table' Newsom says restrictions could tighten as COVID-19 cases grow

Fifty one of the state's 58 counties are now in the most restrictive purple tier, six in the red tier and one in the orange. No California county is in the yellow.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Counties across California have enacted stricter COVID-19 restrictions after the state broke a record with more than 7,400 coronavirus hospitalizations, the most ever in the state. 

And during Gov. Newsom's Monday press conference, he suggested "everything is on the table" as it comes to more restrictions if cases continue to rise in California. 

Health officials are preparing for a wave of cases over the next two or three weeks that could be linked to holiday gatherings. The state reported 7,415 coronavirus hospitalizations on Sunday, citing the most recently available data from the previous day. The new figure breaks the state’s previous record of 7,170 in July.

More than 1,700 of those patients were in intensive care units. The state sits at about 75% of its ICU beds occupied. The California Department of Public Health also recommends hospitals test all patients before admitting them and to promptly test current patients once they show symptoms. The California Nurses Association welcomed the news, calling it a victory for nurses. The California Department of Public Health says the weekly testing should start by the week of Dec. 14.

Newsom highlighted five regions throughout the state — Bay Area, Greater Sacramento, Northern California, San Joaquin Valley, and Southern California — and how throughout December and into early January, four of the five regions could exceed over 100% ICU beds occupied. 

These trends could lead to stay at home orders for counties in the purple tier, Newsom said. Currently, there is a stay-at-home order, or a curfew, for counties in the purple tier from 10 p.m. - 5 a.m. That overnight order stays in effect until late December. To state officials, these are red flags.

"We are assessing in real time over the next day or two to make deep purple moves," Newsom noted. "If these trends continue, we're going to have to take more dramatic, more drastic actions."

California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said activities that were once safe a month ago and deemed low risk, are higher risk activities due to today's trends.

"We need to recalibrate for a short period of time what we do to keep this transmission down and protect those who could become sick and hospitalized and need that care and frankly, keep the death toll in California as low as we can given what we've seen in the past many months," Ghaly said. "We are really in a different situation with transmissions than we've ever faced before."

Los Angeles County is the nation’s most populous and imposed new rules calling for its 10 million residents to stay home as much as possible. They will be prohibited from gathering with people outside of their household for public or private occasions, except church services and protests. 

San Francisco and San Mateo counties moved to the most restrictive purple tier in the state’s pandemic blueprint for the economy. Because of that, starting Monday, Nov. 30, San Francisco and San Mateo counties will join a statewide curfew and Silicon Valley will ban all high school, collegiate and professional sports and impose a quarantine for those traveling into the region from more than 150 miles away. 

Professional and college sports teams are also impacted by these new lockdowns. San Francisco 49ers and other teams may need to find a temporary new home after Santa Clara County banned all contact sports from holding games and practices for the next three weeks. County officials issued the new directives in response to rising cases of the coronavirus in the area. The rules go into effect on Monday, Nov. 30. The 49ers have home games scheduled for Monday, Dec. 7 against the Buffalo Bills and Sunday, Dec. 13 against the Washington Football Team at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara. 

The rules also will affect the NHL's San Jose Sharks and college teams at Stanford and San Jose State. San Francisco 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan says the team was blindsided by new coronavirus regulations put in place by Santa Clara County officials that will force to find a temporary new home for practice and games. The team announced it will play its December home games in Arizona.

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California COVID-19 Update: November 30, 2020

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