By MADISON HIRNEISEN
THE CENTER SQUARE STAFF REPORTER
(The Center Square) — In preparation for a potential winter surge in COVID-19 cases, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an executive order that will ensure the state’s health care facilities have adequate staffing and resources through the season.
The order extends provisions enacted earlier in the pandemic that allows healthcare workers from other states to provide services in California. It also expands the health care workforce by enabling certain medical and emergency personnel to continue supporting the state’s COVID-19 response.
In addition, the order allows health care facilities to adapt their spaces to accommodate patients in alternate areas, which includes using parking lots as pop-up clinics for vaccine distribution.
Under the order, these provisions are extended through March 31.
The order comes as California is tracking an increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in recent weeks, which placed the state back in the highest tier of community transmission, according to metrics outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As of Wednesday afternoon, the state had a case rate of 111.6 per 100,000.
The governor spoke about the potential surge of COVID-19 cases over the winter during a press conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday, where he warned that “winter is coming.” Gov. Newsom encouraged everyone eligible to get vaccinated or get the booster shot as soon as possible to increase immunity heading into the end of the year.
“The way out of this pandemic is to get people immunized, and so we want to continue to encourage that,” Gov. Newsom said.
Madison Hirneisen covers California for The Center Square.