Corona Chronicles: Select Businesses to Open in California, May 8

CDC illustration of a SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) virion

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Businesses that fall into a “low-risk” category, and thus allowed to open May 8, include expanded retail with curbside pickup and associated manufacturing and supply chains that support those businesses.

Cited as examples in those categories are bookstores, clothing stores, florists and sporting goods stores, per Dr. Sonia Y. Angell, California Department of Public Health Director and State Health Officer, who joined Newsom at today’s briefing.

Those businesses still be required to stay closed include offices, seating dining at restaurants and shopping malls.

Newsom pointed out that when businesses reopen, modifications will have to be in place to accommodate social distancing guidelines. He promised to provide specifics on those modifications Thursday.

Angell said the state “is in a really good place” in terms of surge capacity at hospitals with 2,072 beds currently available and 14 facilities ready to accept new patients. There are also 10,000 ventilators currently available and the state is reaching its goal of administering 25,000 tests per day across 86 testing sites, Angell added.

Newsom said there have been 39 deaths across the state of California over the past 24 hours due to COVID-19 illness for a total death count of 2,172.

Monday’s news follows a weekend of protests from Orange County to Rancho Cucamonga as some California residents have grown frustrated with the pandemic’s closures, including O.C. beaches, as well as mass unemployment. Newsom acknowledged the frustrations and said they had to wait for tracing and testing capabilities to meet the moment.

“This is an optimistic day as we see a little bit of ray of sunshine on the horizon,” Newsom said.