Sacramento County prepares for lifting of COVID-19 emergency orders
SACRAMENTO — Dr. Olivia Kasirye with Sacramento County says that COVID-19 may be moving from a pandemic to an endemic.
"These are judgment calls, for the most part, from the state," Dr. Kasirye told CBS13.
The Biden White House announced that the COVID-19 public health emergency will be ending on May 11. In California, the same measures will lift on February 28.
But why now?
"There's no magic number," Dr. Kasirye said.
The Governor's Office said in a statement: "With the public health infrastructure and operational preparedness built up throughout the pandemic, the state has the tools needed to continue protecting Californians when the State of Emergency terminates next month."
The biggest change will come in testing. Instead of being free for all, the end of health emergency orders means that testing and treatment will be like any other piece of medical care.
"In Sacramento County, one of the strategies that helped us a lot was being able to set up the community sites where people could access care," Kasirye said.
So what will the county be doing to make sure underserved communities aren't left adrift?
"We will lean real heavily on some of the community health centers that have been providing healthcare for these populations," Kasirye said.
The hope is that the May deadline will allow for some time to adjust and prepare so no one is caught off guard.
"There are some solutions that the state has and we are waiting on the details so we can make them available for our communities," Kasirye explained.
There's also hope that the world can prepare for COVID-19 to be a part of our lives now.
"It does seem like that. We will be dealing with this virus for a while so I think people need to remember that," Kasirye said.
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