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Posted on: April 6, 2021

California Set to Fully Reopen on June 15

California Reopens June 15

On April 6, the California Department of Public Health has announced that the State will soon exit the Blueprint for a Safer Economy and fully reopen the economy. On June 15, all industries across the state can return to usual operations with common risk reduction measures such as masking and vaccinations. However, the state will only progress to this stage if everyone continues to stay vigilant. The state will monitor hospitalization rates, vaccine access, and vaccine efficacy against variants with the option to revisit the June 15 date if needed.

What triggers the State's move Beyond the Blueprint?

On June 15, California will fully open its economy if two criteria are met:

  1. Equitable vaccine availability: If vaccine supply is sufficient for Californians 16 years or older who wish to be inoculated; and
  2. Consistently low burden of disease: Hospitalizations are stable and low, and specifically, hospitalizations among fully vaccinated individuals are low.

What happens beyond the Blueprint?

When California fully reopens the economy, the state will move beyond the Blueprint for a Safer Economy. Common health measures such as masking will remain across the state. Testing or vaccination verification requirements will remain in relevant settings. Additionally:

  • All sectors listed in the current Blueprint Activities and Business Tiers Chartmay return to usual operations in compliance with ETS/Cal OSHA and other statewide agency guidelines and standards with limited public health restrictions, such as masking, testing, and testing or vaccination verification requirements for large-scale higher-risk events. In addition, the following restrictions apply (via a narrow public health order):
    • Unless testing or vaccination status is verified for all attendees, conventions will be capped at 5,000 persons until October 1; and
    • International convention attendees will only be allowed if fully vaccinated.
  • Schools and institutions of higher education should conduct full-time, in-person instruction, in compliance with Cal/OSHA emergency temporary standards and public health guidelines;
  • Workplaces promote policies that reduce risk, including improved indoor ventilation, and mask-wearing in indoor and other high-risk settings as well as remote work when possible without impacting business operations; and
  • Californians and travelers will be subject to any current CDPH and CDC travel restrictions.

California will also need to maintain the public health and medical infrastructure in these five priority areas:

  • Continue to provide vaccinations and be prepared for the vaccination of Californians under 16 years old. It is critical that vaccines remain effective against circulating strains;
  • Conduct equity-focused monitoring and surveillance by maintaining adequate testing capacity and strategies for the early detection of cases including variants via genomic sequencing;
  • Contain disease spread through timely investigation of cases, contacts, and outbreaks;
  • Maintain a statewide plan to scale up resources for isolation or quarantine; and
  • Monitor hospital admissions and maintain adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) and healthcare surge capacity that can be easily mobilized.

The transition from Blueprint

The CDPH's strategy is to use various levers and incentives to increase the protection of Californians and incentivize vaccination to move us towards community immunity. Since March, California has adjusted the Blueprint to recognize the role of vaccines in reducing transmission. These strategies include:

  • Reopening and expanding the capacity of outdoor sectors;
  • Adding the Vaccine Equity Benchmarks to adjust the case rate thresholds for Blueprint tiers;
  • Allowing increased capacity or numbers of persons allowed, including indoors, with proof of testing or vaccination;
  • Developing guidance or minimum standards to ensure equity, privacy, and ethical practices are integral in the deployment of vaccination and testing verification methods; and
  • Focusing on equity allocations and implementation plans to improve vaccination coverage in our least advantaged and hardest-hit communities.

Because of the efforts of Californians, the State has set June 15 as the date to fully reopen safely. For more information, visit the State's website at covid19.ca.gov.

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