California Department of Public Health Updates COVID-19 Guidance  

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) recently announced updates to several public health orders related to vaccinations, masking, and isolation as the state continues to wind down emergency COVID-19 resources and funding. The news comes after Governor Gavin Newsom ended California’s COVID-19 State of Emergency on Feb. 28

As of March 13, a COVID-19 positive individual may end their isolation after five days instead of 10 if symptoms improve or if they are fever free for 24 hours, with less emphasis on testing negative. According to CDPH, this change aligns with the latest CDC recommendations.  

Beginning April 3, masks will no longer be required in indoor high-risk and health care settings – including health care, long-term care, and correctional facilities as well as emergency warming and cooling centers.  

Also beginning April 3, the state will no longer require COVID-19 vaccinations for healthcare workers including those in adult care, direct care, correctional facilities, and detention centers. 73 percent of California’s population has completed their primary COVID-19 vaccine series and 61 percent has also received at least one booster dose according to state vaccination data. COVID-19 vaccines, testing, and treatment will continue to be offered through providers and some pharmacies. To find services in your area, visit MyTurn

Finally, the state will also revoke an order on April 3 that required health care providers to ask patients for their emails and phone numbers when administering a COVID vaccine. New legislation requires that providers who administer vaccines enter information about patients, including phone numbers as well as race and ethnicity.  

Meanwhile, Santa Clara County’s wastewater monitoring dashboard shows that virus levels are still medium to high in the South Bay. The Palo Alto sewer shed is currently detecting ‘high’ levels of COVID – with the most recent 7-day average being 4 percent higher than the previous 7-day average. San Jose’s watershed is showing a 6 percent decrease in virus concentration from the most recent 7-day average and remains at a ‘medium’ level.   

San Mateo County made its own announcement related to COVID-19 this week, sharing that the county has invested approximately $360 million on recovery initiatives since the beginning of the pandemic.  According to the county, $188 million of those funds went toward housing, $76 million towards food security, and more than $16 million in direct financial relief to families and individuals. The funds also targeted small businesses, childcare providers, and youth programs. The full report on San Mateo County’s pandemic recovery programs can be found here.