May 07, 2021 - 3 min read
Vaccination momentum renews optimism in California
State reopening as vaccination rates increase and COVID-19 cases level off
Governor Gavin Newsom’s announcement from April 7 about moving forward with highly anticipated plans to fully reopen the state by June 15 appears to be on the mark. Dr. Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease physician with UCSF predicts that California could very well reach herd immunity by that time. California ranks 11th in the U.S. for percentage of the population that's received at least one dose of the vaccine, has among the lowest rate of COVID-19 cases, and a 93% drop in hospitalizations since the peak on Jan. 6 when 21,936 COVID-19 patients were in hospitals.
With this good news, it’s hard not to feel optimistic about the state’s reopening plans after a tumultuous year+ for many businesses.
Through Blue Shield’s partnership with the state, vaccination capacity rose to six million people per week at 2,400 sites, surpassing expectations. These facilities make up the network of vaccination sites that Californians can access through MyTurn.
Many industries can finally prepare for a full return to in-person operations assuming COVID-19 cases remain low and vaccination rates steadily rise. With imminent plans to fully reopen California’s economy, it will be more important than ever to keep COVID-19 safety basics top of mind to maintain the state’s progress and continue to curb the virus’s spread. The state plans to continue enforcing the mask mandate past the June 15 reopening date, further minimizing the risk of transmission.
As reopening occurs, employers may face some barriers such as vaccine hesitancy in the workplace and what to do when employees test positive for COVID-19. To help address these concerns, Blue Shield has resources available to employers and their workforce including an in-depth vaccine FAQ and a dedicated testing page. Other helpful resources are available to businesses of all sizes looking to operationalize their reopening plans and open their doors on June 15.
Blue Shield continues to encourage members to get vaccinated and keep up the safety protocols that have become part of our daily routine. Employers, brokers, and members can stay up to date with the latest health news from Blue Shield by visiting our News Center or by subscribing to get updates sent directly to your inbox.
article - October 06, 2021 - 4 min read
Four things to know: COVID-19 developments
Mandates for employers, vaccines for kids, and more