The Alameda County Health Office today joined with six Bay Area health jurisdictions to revise and extend the Shelter in Place order through May 31, 2020, to ensure we do not lose the progress we have achieved in controlling the spread of COVID-19. The limited easing of specific rules takes effect May 4, 2020.
“We are thankful our residents and businesses have complied with the shelter in place order and helped us to flatten the curve,” said Dr. Erica Pan, Health Officer for Alameda County. “Social distancing hasn’t been easy, but it has slowed the increase of new cases, prevented our health systems from becoming overwhelmed, and saved lives. I am encouraged by the data trends and happy to share the indicators we can follow together as we begin to phase in low-risk activities. However, this virus is still in our communities. Everyone needs to continue to shelter-in-place and wear a face covering when out.”
This initial, measured easing of some restrictions is designed to set the stage for a gradual resumption of activity and prevent rapid, exponential growth of cases that could overwhelm hospitals for a particular jurisdiction or the region as a whole.
The following activities may resume as long as physical distancing and industry-specific requirements are followed:
- All construction projects that follow the Construction Project Safety Protocols included with the order;
- All real estate transactions, with restrictions on open houses and limited tours;
- Childcare, camps and educational/recreational programs that provide care for children of people who are allowed to work outside of their homes;
- Outdoor businesses such as nurseries, landscaping, and agriculture that normally operated outdoors prior to the shelter in place orders; and
- Use of certain outdoor recreational facilities, such as skate parks and athletic fields. Golf courses are permitted under local orders, but prohibited under state orders.
Essential and minimum business operations, as defined in the order, may continue.
All businesses operating in the County must update or create a Social Distancing Protocol to reflect new requirements specified in the order. See the fillable social distancing protocol at: http://www.acphd.org/media/572721/health-officer-order-20-10-appendix-a-social-distancing-protocol.docx
Public or private gatherings of any size remain prohibited:
- Playgrounds, picnic areas, gyms, dog parks, and other shared spaces that do not permit physical distancing or have high-touch equipment must remain closed.
- Bars and restaurants continue to be restricted to take-out service only, even if they have outdoor seating.
- Funerals are limited to 10 people.
Everyone should continue to stay and work at home as much as possible; and wear a face covering when outside their home.
Non-essential travel remains prohibited.
Where there are differences between the local Health Officer’s order and the State’s order, everyone must follow the stricter restrictions. Businesses should review both orders to determine compliance and business decisions.
The full order is here: http://www.acphd.org/media/572718/health-officer-order-20-10-shelter-in-place-20200429.pdf Alameda County has also provided a summary of the orders: http://www.acphd.org/media/572777/health-officer-order-20-10-shelter-in-place-04.29.2020-summary.pdf
“We must all continue our collective efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 and save lives by maintaining physical distancing,” said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf. “We must do our part to protect our most vulnerable populations. Now is not the time to relax physical distancing; we must remain vigilant for the sake of our neighbors.”
Public or private gatherings of any size remain prohibited as physical distancing requirements remain mandatory. Crowds gathering at Lake Merritt are a problem and are not permitted under the order. Please #GiveTheLakeABreak.
The City of Oakland is currently reviewing these new guidelines and will develop more specific guidance regarding construction projects, camps and educational/ recreational programs in Oakland in the coming days.
In accordance with the County’s order, and with the health and well-being of Oakland residents and City employees in mind, it is the City’s intent to continue to provide critical services to our residents while allowing people to remain sheltered in place at home and maintaining social distancing.
A list of City service impacts, including facility closures, service suspensions, and alternative service points (online, telephone, or by appointment) is available on the City’s website at: https://www.staging.oaklandca.gov/resources/city-of-oakland-service-modifications-suspensions-closures-in-response-to-alameda-county-public-health-order-to-shelter-in-place. This list will be updated and modified in accordance with the expanded Order and ongoing guidance from the Alameda County Public Health Officer.
The joint release by the seven public health jurisdictions also provides specific indicators that will be used to help assess progress on containing COVID-19 and ensuring we have the infrastructure in place to protect the community from COVID-19. These indicators will be critical to decisions in the coming weeks and months about when and how to ease shelter-in-place restrictions.
The indicators include:
- Whether the total number of cases in the community is flat or decreasing;
- Whether the number of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 is flat or decreasing;
- Whether there is an adequate supply of personal protective equipment for all health care workers;
- Whether we are meeting the need for testing, especially for persons in vulnerable populations or those in high-risk settings or occupations; and
- Whether we have the capacity to investigate all COVID-19 cases and trace all of their contacts, isolating those who test positive and quarantining the people who may have been exposed.
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