California, a recent epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, has lifted its regional stay-at-home orders as the outbreak slows across the state and hospitalizations ease.
Four-week projections for intensive-care capacity are above 15%, according to a statement Monday by the California Department of Public Health. That’s the threshold that allows regions to exit stay-at-home orders. The San Joaquin Valley, San Francisco Bay Area and Southern California had been under the restrictions.
“California is slowly starting to emerge from the most dangerous surge of this pandemic yet, which is the light at the end of the tunnel we’ve been hoping for,” said Mark Ghaly, California’s health and human services secretary.
The most-populous state will return to its four-tiered reopening system for counties, with most areas remaining in the purple tier with the tightest restrictions. Still, lifting the stay-home rules will allow businesses such as outdoor dining to resume.
Even as trends are improving, California still has had an average of more than 31,000 cases a day over the past two weeks. On Jan. 21, it had a record 764 daily deaths.
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