You can legally get your hair cut today at storefront locations and restaurants can again offer outdoor dining.
And that is despite the message from Gov. Gavin Newsom last month that the state wouldn’t allow such activities to take place until ICU capacity in various regions exceeded 15 percent.
On Monday when Newsom in a surprise move dropped the lockdown of the San Joaquin Valley, Southern California, and the Bay Area regions where none of the areas were even close to that level he had been saying for weeks was critical to meet. On Monday, the ICU capacity in all of the seven hospitals in San Joaquin County was at 144 percent or 59 percent higher than the acceptable threshold Newsom established. Of the 143 patients in ICU, 85 or 59 percent had COVID.
Overall 82 percent or 801 hospital beds are occupied. Of those, 283 or 35 percent are COVID patients.
The governor indicated he made his latest decision on data trends that showed ICU capacity in all regions would be above 15 percent within four weeks.
In the last 16 days in San Joaquin County 111 people have died. That pushed the death county to 825 as of Monday. That includes 49 deaths during the past seven days.
San Joaquin County Public Health Director Dr. Maggie Park had the option of not following the governor’s latest directive. Instead she decided the county would lift the lockdown and move back to the four-colored tier system.
Being in the purple tier it now means it is legal throughout San Joaquin County for:
*low contact youth sports which could include golf, cross country, tennis, swimming and track. (See more details on B-1 in sports).
*hair stylists, barber shops and similar care services to open following strict guidelines .
*restaurants to open their outdoor dining.
*a maximum of three households to gather providing it is outdoors.
*places of worship to meet outdoors.
*for gyms, health clubs, and family entertainment centers to open outdoors only.
*retail to open with 25 percent capacity.
All of the abovementioned activities must adhere to county-issued COVID protocols.
“This action by the State will go a long way in helping our businesses recover from the pandemic”, said County Board of Supervisors Chair Tom Patti. “We appreciate the State lifting the Stay At-Home Order and allowing San Joaquin County businesses and residents to reopen. I also want to recognize our local businesses for being patient during this hardship and taking all necessary safety measures to either continue operation or to now reopen and bring back local jobs.”
To move into the next tier that includes allowing indoor restaurant dining, county health officials indicated the community still needs to be tested.
COVID testing is available in Manteca at two sites; the Transit Center on Moffat Boulevard Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St., Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Both sites will ask for an insurance card if you are insured. If you do not have insurance the test will still be provided free of charge.
Initially guidance from public health officials specified that only those that are exhibiting symptoms common with the COVID-19 infection should be tested, but that since been relaxed to allow anybody who wants to be tested to go through the process.
County health officials remind residents that they can help slow the spread by following the Health Orders and guidelines, wearing a mask, washing your hands regularly, practicing physical distancing, being tested, and limiting mixing with people outside your household.
As of Monday, there are 3,470 active positive COVID cases among the county’s 767,000 residents. Not everyone that tests positive will become ill.
Since mid-March there have been 59,665 cases with 55,360 of those people recovered.
To find testing locations, more information, or report violations visit SJReady.org.
To contact Dennis Wyatt, email email@example.com