SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego County leaders expanded public health orders set up to address the coronavirus pandemic.
San Diego County's expanded order closed all gyms and fitness centers and restricted child care to "stable" groups of 10 children (the same group of 10 children with the same childcare professional each day) starting at midnight Thursday.
Earlier this week, health leaders issued several public health orders that suspended bars, in-restaurant dining to pickup or delivery only, and large social gatherings of 50 or more people.
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Wednesday's orders also limited public gatherings from 50 to no more than 10 people.
According to County Public Health Officer Dr. Wilma Wooten, that order banning large gatherings does not apply to public transit, airports or mass transportation.
Wooten added that while some businesses have reportedly stayed open despite the measures, the county would enforce the orders as violators are reported.
Officials stopped short of saying a shelter-in-place order was coming, but Wooten said Southern California health leaders were scheduled to discuss the potential step later Wednesday.
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Dr. Eric McDonald, medical director of the San Diego County HHSA’s Epidemiology and Immunization Services Branch, added that since the measure was being discussed, locals should prepare themselves for such an action.
San Diego County has 80 reported coronavirus cases, as of March 18. The county says 67 are San Diego County residents, five are in federal quarantine, and eight are non-residents:
-- Age 0-17: 0 cases
-- Age 18-64: 63 cases
-- Age 65+: 17 cases
-- Females: 27 cases
-- Males: 53 cases
Tuesday, the county's health orders and strong recommendations to limit the spread of COVID-19 included:
- All public or private “gatherings,” defined as any event or convening that brings together 50 or more people in a single room or single space at the same time, such as an auditorium, stadium, arena, theater, church, casino, large conference room, meeting hall, cafeteria, or any other theater, church, casino, large conference room, meeting hall, cafeteria, or any other indoor or outdoor space, are prohibited. All non-essential gatherings of any size are strongly discouraged;
- All bars, adult entertainment establishments, and other business establishments that serve alcohol and do not serve food, shall close;
- All restaurants and other business establishments that serve food shall close all on-site dining. All food served shall be by delivery, or through pick-up or drive thru. Social distancing shall be required for persons picking up food on site.
- All businesses shall enact social distancing, increased sanitation standards, and shall make every effort to use telecommuting for its workforce. All businesses shall suspend any policy or procedure requiring doctor verification for sick or other leave approval;
- All public or private schools, colleges, and universities shall not hold classes or other school activities where students gather on the school campus. Parents of school-aged minor children shall take steps to ensure said children are not participating in activities prohibited by the Order and that social distancing requirements are practiced;
- A strong recommendation is made that all persons who are 65 years old or older, have a chronic underlying condition, or have a compromised immune system self-quarantine themselves at home;
- “Non-essential personnel,” defined as employees, contractors, or members of the public who do not perform treatment, maintenance, support, or administrative tasks deemed essential, are prohibited from entry into any hospital or long-term care facility. All essential personnel who show any potential signs or symptoms of COVID-19 shall be strictly prohibited from entry into hospitals or long-term care facilities;
- Hospitals and healthcare providers shall take measures to preserve resources including delaying non-emergent or elective surgeries or procedures where feasible;
- Hospitals, healthcare providers, and commercial testing laboratories shall report all COVID-19 test results to the Public Health Officer immediately after such results are received;
- All persons arriving in the county, from locations as found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Warning Level 3 Travel Advisory shall be subject to 14-day home quarantine, self-monitoring;
- A strong recommendation is made for persons exhibiting mild to moderate symptoms of COVID-19 to self-isolate themselves in their place of residence unless seeking medical treatment