California to reopen slowly amid coronavirus, expert says


So when can California really be ready to relax their statewide home stay order?

Governor Gavin Newsom has outlined a four-step plan that envisions a process by which restrictions to slow the spread of the coronavirus are gradually lifted.

Newsom said he understands the frustrations and suggested announcing relaxation of certain rules starting this week.

“I just want to let people know that we are about to make some really significant increases in this stay-at-home order,” Newsom said Friday. “I mean several days, not weeks, as long as we remain cautious and thoughtful.”

The governor described the next phase of his order to stay home as allowing certain low-risk businesses to reopen in communities across California, including retail stores, manufacturing sites and small businesses.

“The only thing that will hold us back is the spread of this virus,” Newsom said. “And the only thing that is sure to advance the spread of the virus is thousands of people who gather. By practicing social distance or physical distance, we can avoid this. “

Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of the Trump administration’s corornavirus task force, also called for the reopening.

“The federal guidelines are a pretty firm policy of what we think is important from a public health perspective,” Birx said on Fox News on Sunday. “As states reopen, we really want them to follow the trigger criteria.”

Birx added that the American people must continue practice social distancing.

California has yet to experience a steady two-week drop in coronavirus cases. The weekly number of cases appeared to stabilize for several weeks in early April, with 8,000 to 8,500 cases each week. But from April 19 to 25, the state registered 11,777 new cases and, in the seven days ending Saturday, 11,041 new cases were registered.

California has started to see a week-to-week drop in deaths. However, the continuation of the trend is uncertain. From April 19 to 25, 547 deaths from coronavirus were reported in California and last week, 497 deaths were reported, a 9% decrease in weekly deaths.

Here’s a look at the governor’s plan and what an expert thinks of it.

The expert is Dr. Robert Kim-Farley, medical epidemiologist and infectious disease expert at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. He is also a former senior official in the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the World Health Organization. From 2004 to 2018, he was director of the Los Angeles County Communicable Disease Control and Prevention Division.

Step 1: Continue with the stay at home order

This is the stage we are in. The governor issued the first nationwide home stay order on March 19, three days after six counties in the San Francisco Bay area implemented the first shelter order in the country.

Public health chief Dr. Sonia Angell said now is a good time to talk about the state’s reopening, as hospitalization rates for COVID-19 are stable in California. Some regions have already begun to relax stricter local orders than those of the state.

Expert forecasts: By the end of May or until mid-June, Kim-Farley expects that locations that have effectively maintained physical distancing will see their number of cases decrease significantly. He also suspects that around this time there will be enough capacity to offer tests for the virus and antibodies – to determine if people can have some immunity – to meet the demand.

More than 2,200 Californians have died and more than 54,000 have been confirmed to be infected with the coronavirus. Los Angeles County has the most deaths among the 58 counties in California – more than 1,200, or more than 55% of the state total – even though it accounts for a quarter of the state’s population.

Stage 2: gradual opening of low-risk workplaces

Opening with new restrictions:

  • Retail, with adaptations, such as offering curbside pickup
  • Factories, such as those that make toys, clothes, and furniture
  • Offices, where telework is not possible, but with modifications to reduce risks
  • Reopening of modified school and child care programs

Expert forecasts: Kim-Farley has said he suspects California will head into phase 2 from mid-June to July. Relaxation could occur sooner if the number of cases decreases earlier, but could also occur later if a high number of cases persists.

Step 3: Opening high-risk workplaces

Much more work will need to be done to make the workplace safer, public health chief Angell said last week. “We need to know a lot more about the disease movement to be able to make data-driven decisions about what is safe for people,” said Angell.

  • Hairdressers and manicures
  • Gyms
  • Cinemas
  • Sports without live audience
  • Churches
  • Weddings

Expert forecasts: In general, Kim-Farley suspects that stage 3 could occur around August or September – late summer or early fall. He expects that social distancing measures – such as wearing face covers and limiting the number of people inside a store – will continue.

Again, the timing may be sooner or later, depending on the progression of the pandemic.

Step 4: full opening

The complete end of the home stay order, allowing the resumption of:

  • Sports with live audience
  • Congress centers
  • Concerts

Expert forecasts: This may not be implemented until the middle or end of 2021, said Kim-Farley.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said that even in the most optimistic scenarios, it would take 12 to 18 months for a vaccine to become available.

Fauci said on Tuesday that it may not be possible for sports teams to resume play this year.

“Safety, for players and for fans, takes precedence over everything,” Fauci said in an interview with The New York Times. “If you can’t guarantee safety, then unfortunately you’re going to have to bite the bullet and say,” We may have to do without this sport for this season. “”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here