COVID-19 tier system will end June 15

San Diego about the San Diego's newest pop-up vaccination site in the City Heights neighborhood. (Nelvin C. Cepeda  The San Diego Union-Tribun

California plans to lift most coronavirus restrictions on businesses June 15, keep mask mandate

"The state will monitor hospitalization rates, vaccine access and vaccine efficacy against variants, with the option to revisit the June 15 date if needed".

Meanwhile, in the Bay Area, eight out of nine counties are now in the "Orange" tier - Sonoma, Napa, and Contra Costa counties were promoted on Tuesday, and now only Solano County remains in the "Red", along with neighboring counties like Sacramento and San Joaquin. The following day, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a target statewide reopening date of June 15, provided certain public health criteria are met. "We look to get to that end of the blueprint". A health official from Illinois' Cook County, the jurisdiction that encompasses Chicago, said Monday that a local spike in new cases will likely bring another "clampdown" within days. That number is expected to increase, with Newsom anticipating that more than 30 million doses will have been administered by the end of the month.

Vaccine eligibility will expand to people in California 16 and older starting April 15, although some counties have already started vaccinating young adults.

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"With more than 20 million vaccines administered across the state, it is time to turn the page on our tier system and begin looking to fully reopen California's economy", Newsom said.

Officials say the state will discard the color-coded "Blueprint to a Safer Economy" the four-tier, color-coded system that guided economic reopening through a series of restrictions and capacity limits.

Dr. Mark Ghaly, the state's secretary of health and human services, said in an earlier briefing Tuesday, April 6, that the current trend toward lower COVID-related hospitalizations has a lot to do with the the level of confidence now on display. "We can now begin planning for our lives post-pandemic".

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Gavin Newsom said in a tweet that California has the lowest positivity rate in the country.

The move, confirmed with the release of the state's latest tier report, will squeeze out a little more indoor operating space for restaurants, gyms, outdoor entertainment venues, amusement parks and a host of other businesses and organizations, allowing them to exceed the thin limits that govern the red tier where the region sat for three straight weeks.

However, the state's face mask mandate will remain in place indefinitely, along with so-called "social distancing" and the pressure to vaccinate.

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Schools and institutions of higher education should conduct full-time, in-person instruction in compliance with state and federal health guidelines, the memo added.

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