California Promises Guidance On Wearing Masks In Daily Life, Newsom Gives Coronavirus Update
California Gov. Gavin Newsom is scheduled announce an initiative to help older Californians stay connected while staying at home due to the novel coronavirus. He'll also be delivering additional updates as part of his daily press conference on California's response to COVID-19.
You can watch the live video above and follow this post for updates.
INCREASES IN CORONAVIRUS INFECTIONS
There are 6,932 people positive for coronavirus in California, Newsom said, with 150 deaths. There are 1,617 people hospitalized with COVID-19, including 657 in the ICU. That's a 17% increase in positives, 13% increase in hospitalizations, and 10% increase in ICU patients since yesterday.
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STATE GUIDANCE ON WEARING MASKS COMING
The state is considering guidance around whether people beyond the medical profession should wear some sort of mask or face covering, including in professions like grocery store workers, Newsom said. The science is incomplete in this area, according to Newsom, and there is a concern that people will think masks are a replacement for social distancing, which they aren't.
That guidance on masks should be expected within 24 hours, according to Newsom.
[UPDATE: Riverside County on Tuesday issued guidance to cover your face:
An announcement on whether schools will reopen this school year from the state superintendent is expected in the next one to two days, according to Newsom.
MORE VENTILATORS, BEDS
Virgin Orbit in Long Beach is prototyping less complex ventilators that can be used, with a prototype being delivered to the state operations center in the next 48 hours, according to Newsom. There have been 4,252 ventilators identified in the state so far, with a goal of having about 10,000 ventilators available. The state has requests out to acquire about another 5,000 ventilators.
There are 5,000 beds that have been identified in the UC and CSU university systems that could be used as part of a phase two ramp-up.
The state is working to connect seniors during this time of social distancing, Newsom said. A new hotline has been set up to help people get questions answered and find ways to support those people. The phone number is 833-544-2374. The state has also partnered with the 2-1-1 service to help connect people to services.
Newsom encouraged people to check in on not just people they know, but also strangers at this time.
HEALTH CARE WORKER SURGE
Newsom thanked those who had already signed up for the state's health care worker surge initiative, with 25,000 people with licenses who've signed up since the program launched on Monday.
The governor encouraged people to make sure to fill out their census to make sure the state gets its allocation of resources.
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