Local News

Bay Area Counties Announce Shelter in Place Directives

Alameda County, Contra Costa County and City of Berkeley (along with Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara counties) have issued legal orders directing their respective residents to shelter at home for three weeks beginning at midnight tonight (12:01 AM on March 17). The order limits activity, travel, and business functions to only the most essential needs. The guidance comes after substantial input from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and best practices from other health officials around the world.

The order defines essential activities as necessary for the health and safety for individuals and their families. Essential businesses allowed to operate during the recommended action include health care operations; businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals; fresh and non-perishable food retailers (including convenience stores); pharmacies; child care facilities; gas stations; banks; laundry businesses and services necessary for maintaining the safety, sanitation and essential operation of a residence. In addition, health care, law and safety, and essential government functions will continue under the recommended action.

Please note that the orders specifically state (see page 4):

  • For purposes of this Order, individuals may leave their residence to work for or obtain services at any “Healthcare Operations” including hospitals, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, other healthcare facilities, healthcare suppliers, home healthcare services providers, mental health providers, or any related and/or ancillary healthcare services. “Healthcare Operations” also includes veterinary care and all healthcare services provided to animals. This exemption shall be construed broadly to avoid any impacts to the delivery of healthcare, broadly defined. “Healthcare Operations” does not include fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities.

For more information, see Alameda County’s announcement and formal order ; and Contra Costa County’s formal order .

The ACCMA is still reviewing the complete orders and will continue to provide information to members as soon as possible. We are also preparing telemedicine guidance that we plan to distribute to all members later today. In the meantime, please let us know if you have questions or concerns, we want to hear them – we are doing the best we can to bring you information that can help you and your practice respond to this evolving situation. For more COVID-19 resources and updates, please visit the ACCMA COVID-19 webpage online at www.accma.org/COVID-19 . Please direct questions and concerns to accma@accma.org or 510-654-5383.