County of Orange Information

o.c.health-care-agencyCOUNTY OF ORANGE COVID-19 UPDATES

For additional information click on the following links: 

State of California  

City of Orange

1/21/2021 County of Orange Adds Second Regional COVID-19 Vaccine Super POD Site

The County of Orange is opening its second regional COVID-19 Vaccine Super Point of Dispensing (POD) site at Soka University in Aliso Viejo on Saturday, January 23, 2021, starting at 8:00 am. 

Orange County is moving quickly to make the COVID-19 vaccination available; however, the County faces ongoing supply limitations. The Orange County Health Care Agency is continuously requesting more doses from the State every day.  

Named Operation Independence, the County is setting up regional vaccine points of dispensing (POD) sites. Due to the scope and size of these PODs, based on the high demand for vaccine, these sites are being referred to as County Super PODs. Since the Disneyland Resort Super POD site opened on January 13, there have been approximately 21,782 vaccines distributed to eligible Orange County residents and those working in Orange County.

New Super POD sites will open as the supply of COVID-19 vaccines available in the County increases. The County anticipates the need for at least five Super PODs located throughout the county. Additional Super POD sites will open in a phased approach, ensuring access to all Orange County residents.   

Vaccines dispensed at County Super PODs are currently available for individuals who live and work in Orange County and fall within the State’s Phase 1A, all tiers, including persons age 65 and older. Appointments are available through Othena.com based on vaccine availability. Eligible individuals with an appointment must present identification and proof of eligibility at the Super POD site to receive a vaccine. To view a list of those who are eligible to receive a vaccine, visit the OC Health Care Agency’s website: https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com/phased-approach-vaccine-distribution.  

The Operation Independence Incident Management Team (IMT) was established on December 31, 2020. The IMT is a unified command with representatives from the Orange County Health Care Agency, the Orange County Fire Authority and other fire service agencies in Orange County, Orange County’s Sheriff’s Department and other law enforcement agencies, the County of Orange County Executive Office (CEO) and other County agencies. 

For questions related to COVID-19, visit http://www.ochealthinfo.com/novelcoronavirus, or follow the HCA on Facebook (@ochealthinfo) and Twitter (@ochealth).

1/21/2021 Disneyland Vaccine POD will reopen today, Thursday January 21

Based on the current weather forecast, the COVID-19 vaccine Super POD site at Disneyland will reopen today, Thursday, January 21, to those with appointments.  Vaccine scheduling has been simplified. Simply register and you will be e-mailed when an appointment is available.  Eligible individuals who are registered in the Othena system will receive an  e-mail to schedule a vaccination appointment.  

If you have questions about, or issues with, Othena, specialists are responding to callers at the Orange County Health Care Agency Hotline to assist you. Call (714) 834-2000, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., or email Othena at support@compositeapps.net

1/13/2021 COVID-19 Vaccinations at Disneyland Resort Super POD Site by Appointment Only

Individuals without appointments, even if they are within an eligible group, are urged not to come to the Disneyland Resort Super POD vaccination site without an appointment.

Overwhelming the POD (point of distribution) system will make it even more challenging to dispense the limited supply of vaccine currently available. As vaccine becomes more plentiful, additional appointments will become available, and all eligible individuals will receive vaccine.

The County’s three existing POD sites were overwhelmed by individuals without appointments today, effectively shutting down the vaccination sites. It is critical for people to understand that appointment slots are available based on vaccine availability. Showing up without an appointment stresses the system and depletes scarce resources.

We know the public is anxious to receive the vaccine and we are working diligently to receive additional supplies. Appointments will be available as soon as the vaccine supply exists to meet that demand.

All residents are encouraged to register to be notified when the County of Orange’s vaccine and testing management app, Othena, has appointments available and is ready for their use by visiting https://othena.com/individuals.php and filling out the online form.

To learn more about the County’s Phased Distribution plan, please visit www.COVIDVaccineFacts.com.

The full text of the release can be found at https://mailchi.mp/ochca/disneysuperpod

1/12/2021 County of Orange Announces First Regional COVID-19 Super POD at Disneyland Resort

In a vital step to help battle the spread of COVID-19, the County of Orange has established the first large Point-of-Dispensing (POD) site to provide COVID-19 vaccines to residents at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim.

Known as “Super POD” sites, the five regional Super PODs will have the capacity to vaccinate thousands of residents each day. The Super PODs will increase efficiency and provide multiple vaccine distribution points throughout Orange County. The County will announce additional Super POD sites as agreements are finalized.

Vaccine distribution is managed through a phased, tiered approach established by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH).  Currently, vaccinations are available to Orange County residents and those who work in Orange County who meet the criteria for what is referred to as “Phase 1a, all tiers.” This group includes law enforcement first responders in high-risk communities and was recently expanded to include those age 75 and older. We are excited to serve this group as a priority population. The County is working in collaboration with community partners to create a process that reaches seniors close to home and best serves these individuals.  

 Please refer to these CDPH links for a complete list of eligible groups:

    https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/CDPH-Allocation-Guidelines-for-COVID-19-Vaccine-During-Phase-1A-Recommendations.aspx

    https://covid19.ca.gov/essential-workforce/

The first Super POD at the Disneyland Resort will be operational later this week.  Most of those eligible to be vaccinated in Phase 1a will be contacted through their employer to schedule an appointment via a third-party app developed in cooperation with the County of Orange. 

Only those identified under Phase 1a who have an appointment will receive a vaccination at the County’s new Super POD locations.  Individuals with appointments must provide identification and documentation of vaccine eligibility at the site. Walk-ups without an appointment cannot be accommodated. Given the limited initial supply of the COVID-19 vaccine, distribution will be limited at first and increased over time. The phased, tiered approach to vaccine distribution aims to reach critical populations to reduce morbidity and mortality rates due to the transmission of COVID-19.

Those interested in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine can view the phased tiers of eligibility and other important vaccination information at OC Health Care Agency’s website, www.COVIDVaccineFacts.com. The success of the vaccination distribution plan and the Super POD sites is dependent on everyone understanding where they fall in the phased, tiered plan. Individuals attempting to receive a vaccine ahead of schedule will overload the system, making it even more challenging to meet this urgent need. We appreciate the public’s patience and understanding.

The County, through its “Operation Independence,” established a goal of completing all county vaccinations by July 4, 2021. An Incident Management Team (IMT) was established on December 31, 2020, for Operation Independence. The Operation Independence IMT is a unified command with representatives from the Orange County Health Care Agency, the Orange County Fire Authority, the County of Orange County Executive Office (CEO) and other County agencies.

 For questions related to COVID-19, visit http://www.ochealthinfo.com/novelcoronavirus

12/25/2020 OC Health Care Agency 

The Orange County Health Care Agency has updated its COVID-19 website, which now includes information on the phased vaccine distribution plan. Visit https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com/phased-approach-vaccine-distribution.

12/17/2020 On the Front Lines

As one of the major centers of health and medicine in the County, Orange home to St. Joseph Hospital, CHOC Children’s Hospital, UCI Medical Center, Chapman Global Medical Center, and so many others.  The thousands of dedicated health professionals employed by these organizations, and their support teams, have been serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic since the first case was discovered in Orange County back in January.  They have worked tirelessly, day by day, patient by patient, to provide world-class care to the ever growing numbers of patients afflicted with the coronavirus.

As we approach the end of 2020, and the promise of a better 2021 as the vaccine begins distribution, we would ask our entire community to join with us in showing our appreciation to our City of Orange medical facilities, doctors, nurses, specialists, and the numerous other professions and support personnel.  While 2020 has been full of adversity and challenges, they have been our beacons of hope.  We, the City of Orange, offer our most sincere thanks.

Please remember that there is still a long road to travel before we can finally declare victory over COVID-19.  If you would like to show your appreciation to our local medical professionals, there are several ways you can help:

UCI Medical Center is setting-up a Mobile Field Hospital on the Center’s grounds to care for the sharp increase in COVID related admissions that is anticipated over the next few weeks.  They are looking for organizations or individuals who can feed the 45 people per day who are working to deploy the MFE from Sunday, 12/20 to Tuesday, 12/22.  If you, or someone you know, have the ability to fulfill this need, please contact Nathan Tabita, UCI Health, at ntabita@hs.uci.edu.

COVID-19 sanitation and safety guidelines require all food donations be single portions in individual containers, “grab and go” style. No buffet or family style meals, please.

Our other Hospitals are also looking for donations of food to feed their medical and support staffs. It’s an outstanding way to show appreciation for them.  If you do not own a restaurant, consider contacting one of our local restaurants and funding meals through them.  

If you can help, please contact the numbers below:

St Joseph Hospital:  (949) 375-9046

UCI Health:  Jbrothma@hs.uci.edu or ntabita@hs.uci.edu 

CHOC Children’s:  chochcc@choc.org or (714) 509-4308 / (714)-509-4158

Chapman Global:  jen.chandler@kpchealth.com or (714) 450-1811

12/15/20 Local Health Care System Update 

OC Health Care Agency Deploys Mobile Field Hospitals to Help Alleviate COVID-19 Burden on the Local Health Care System

(Santa Ana, CA) — The OC Health Care Agency will deploy mobile field hospitals (MFHs) to local hospitals this week to support the Orange County (OC) health care system as it responds to a surge in COVID-19 patients. OC hospitals may receive emergency waivers from the California Department of Public Health to request the use of the MFH facilities. 

MFHs are capable of expanding current hospital capacity by adding additional beds to existing grounds. They are housed in large, semi-type trailers and contain heavy duty canvas tents with hard flooring and temperature-controlled units equipped with running water, toilets and showers, generators and lighting, as well as air purifiers. MFHs can be configured in a myriad of footprints and sizes, and the HCA has a total of 8 trailers to support at minimum, 200 patient beds. 

The MFHs can be used for numerous COVID-19 mitigation activities such as expanding emergency department capacity and med-surge or specialty care unit beds, mass vaccination facilities, and more. Each identified hospital is charged with using the MFH in a manner that best suits their facility. The following OC hospitals have requested this resource from the HCA and have already activated their surge plans:

    Fountain Valley Regional Hospital — 50 beds

    St. Jude Medical Center, Fullerton — 25 beds

    University of California, Irvine — 50 beds

Read the full release at https://mailchi.mp/ochca/mfhs

11/17/2020 Orange County moves to Purple Tier

Please read this important media release from the County of Orange on the moving of Orange County to the State’s COVID “Blueprint for A Safer Economy” more restrictive Purple Tier.

Under Purple Tier status, bars where no meals are provided are to be closed, and restaurants will once again be outdoor service only. There are several other sectors which will be limited to outdoors only in the Purple Tier.  For a list of sectors impacted with returning to Purple  Tier, click here

Guidance for Schools: Under the Purple Tier, K-12 schools that have NOT reopened for in-person instruction will have to remain online. K-12 schools that are currently in a phase-in process to re-open, i.e. within a single campus some grade levels have re-opened while the remaining scheduled to re-open in the next weeks or months, will have to submit a request to continue with CCICOVIDSchools@ochca.com. However, K-12 schools that have fully reopened prior to today for in-person instruction are not required to close. Higher education institutions under the Purple Tier must close indoor lectures and student gatherings. Some courses conducted in certain indoor settings, like labs for essential workers and studio arts, may be open.

In order to reduce the spread of COVID-19, which is the key to moving out of the Purple Tier, it is critical that people wear a face coverings whenever they are in public.   Face coverings should be worn when gathering with people you don’t live with, this includes close friends and family members who do not reside with you.   As always, frequent hand washing, social distancing, and limiting contact with those not in your immediate household are your best defense against COVID-19.   

To see the State’s entire “Blueprint”, click here. 

To read the original media release, click here.

11/21/2020 The most effective way to prevent the spread. 

The County of Orange Health Care Agency reminds everyone that the most effective way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to follow 3 basic rules:

1.    Wear a face covering

2.    Wash your hands often

3.    Remain 6 feet apart from other people 

For more information, please visit OC Health at   www.ochealthinfo.com/protecteachother

10/21/2020 Covid-19 Vaccine Survey 

The County of Orange Health Care Agency is asking for community input to assist in the planning for distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, when it becomes available.  You can participate, and take their survey at www.research.net/r/covidvaccine_English.

For more information on the County’s COVID-19 efforts, please visit OC Health at  https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com

10/07/2020  OC Health Care Agency on the importance of  receiving the flu vaccine 

OC Health Care Agency Wants Everyone to Get a Flu Shot  County makes sure getting the vaccine is easy and free (Santa Ana, CA) – With flu season now upon us, the OC Health Care Agency is already anticipating the potentially devastating effects of a double whammy of influenza and COVID-19 cases hitting in the fall and winter months and urges everyone to get a flu shot.

Recognizing all of the things that people are worried about such as paying bills and dealing with the stress of social isolation due to COVID-19, the County is launching a flu vaccine campaign designed to encourage people to get their flu shot so they have one less thing to think about. 

The flu vaccine will be available as a shot or mist form at the Family Health Clinics by appointment only 8 - 11:30 a.m. and 1- 4 p.m. Mondays to Fridays. Clinics are closed 11:30 a.m.- 1 p.m. People who live in Orange County should call 1-800-914-4887 for locations and an appointment. There will also be flu pop-up clinics throughout the community that will be listed on the ochealthinfo.com/getyourflushot website.

“Cooler weather is coming, and we know that when people spend more time indoors and have closer contact with each other, germs spread much more quickly,” said Dr. Clayton Chau, Director of the OC Health Care Agency and County Health Officer. “It is critical that everyone over 6 months old get a flu shot to decrease the incidence of influenza in the community and to ease the stress on the healthcare system when both viruses are likely to be circulating.”

To find out more about the flu vaccine, go to ochealthinfo.com/getyourflushot.

8/24/2020 Orange County has been removed from Monitoring list

According to the OC Health Care Agency, Orange County has been removed from the State of California’s COVID-19 monitoring list due to our progress in slowing the spread of the Coronavirus. This decision is based on several key metrics, including a decrease in the 3-day average of patients hospitalized for COVID-19.  View the County’s COVID-19 tracking dashboard here: https://ochca.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/cc4859c8c522496b9f21c451de2fedae

While this is a good sign, Orange County must remain off the monitoring list for 15 consecutive days.  While there is no immediate change to the current State Health Orders we operate under,  we are awaiting further guidance from the State on what our removal from the list means for our local businesses.  To see the State’s County Data Monitoring Watch List criteria, visit www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/COVID19CountyDataTable.aspx

Orange County could be placed back on the list if our COVID numbers start increasing again. We must work together to ensure that this positive trend continues.  Don’t forget to observe social distancing, wear face coverings, avoid gatherings, and practice frequent hand washing.

8/14/2020 Orange County "Back to Business Initiative" 

Please read this important media release from the County of Orange on the “Expansion of the Back2Business Initiative,” which now includes outdoor planning for small businesses.  

Read the release online at https://cms.ocgov.com/civicax/filebank/blobdload.aspx?BlobID=117240

For more information on the Back2Business Initiative, visit https://bit.ly/ocfloorplans or call the Economic and Business Recovery Call Center at (714) 480-6500.

8/11/2020 Covid-19 Testing Information

COVID-19 testing is available through an appointment-based, drive-thru site at the Anaheim Convention Center. Tests are available to Orange County residents at no-cost for people who meet Public Health priorities for testing and cannot get a test through their medical provider (doctor). 

The test offered at this site is called a PCR test, and show if someone is currently infected with COVID-19 and may be contagious.

The Center located at the Anaheim Convention Center, West Street entrance, and is open Tuesday to Saturday, 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.

APPOINTMENTS ARE REQUIRED.  For an appointment, visit https://360clinic.fulgentgenetics.com/appointment/screen/landing

Who Can Get Tested?

If your health provider cannot assist you or you do not have insurance Orange County residents may get tested at the Anaheim Convention Center Testing Site if they meet the following requirements:

•Orange County resident

•Have symptoms of COVID-19

OR

Meet Public Health criteria for priority testing:

•Healthcare workers and first responders •Workers in congregate living settings such as skilled nursing facilities, jails, or homeless shelter settings •Individuals with close contact (15 minutes or more within 6 feet) to someone known or suspected to have COVID-19 •Essential workers – those with contact with the public such as such as grocery store workers, social service providers, government workers, etc.

For more information, visit https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com/supersite

8/5/2020 Covid-Safe Restaurant Campaign

Please read this important media release from the County of Orange regarding the new "SafeDineOC COVID-Safe Restaurant Campaign." The Campaign is intended to incentivize Orange County restaurants to follow California Department of Public Health guidance to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Restaurant owners may apply for a $1,000 grant per Orange County restaurant location for taking steps to create a COVID-safe environment for their customers and employees. The grant will reimburse restaurants for purchases of personal protective equipment including face masks, cleaning products, employee training and costs for physical distancing of tables and chairs, as examples.

More information about the program may be found at www.safedineoc.com.

7/14/2020 Orange County Media Release for Covid-19 Test Center

Please read this important media release from the County of Orange on a new COVID -19 testing center, which will open July 15 at the Anaheim Convention Center: Click Here to read the media release. 

7/1/2020 Updated Order from Governor Gavin Newsom

Both the State of California and the County of Orange have issued new Health Orders in response to the Coronavirus pandemic:

State of California:  

Due to rising COVID-19 infection rates in several counties, and effective immediately, July 1, the State of California has closed all bars, including those with outdoor areas, in several counties, including Orange County.  The following businesses must also cease indoor operations, though they may continue outdoor operations if they exist:

  • Restaurants
  • Wineries and tasting rooms
  • Movie theaters 
  • Family entertainment centers (for examples: bowling alleys, miniature golf, batting         cages and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Cardrooms
  • Bars must close all operations even if they are operating outdoors.

This order is effective for a minimum of three weeks, and is subject to possible extension. For the list of businesses affected by the closure, or more information, visit: https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap-counties/

County of Orange:  

The Orange County Health Agency has issued new Health Orders closing all bars in Orange County to help slow the spread of COVID-19.  The Order, which is effective tomorrow, Thursday, July 2, helps align counties in Southern California due to the increases in COVID-19 cases across the region. 

For the full text of the County Order, visit: https://cms.ocgov.com/civicax/filebank/blobdload.aspx?BlobID=116494

6/30/2020 COVID-19 Testing

The Orange County Health Care Agency has announced the OC COVID-19 Testing Network, which is offering Coronavirus testing at no charge to anyone with symptoms and without access to a healthcare provider.

This testing is only being offered to people exhibiting Coronavirus symptoms, which includes cough, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing, among other.  An appointment is necessary, which can be made by calling (800) 5674-8448 or by going to OChealthInfo.com/covidtest.

All test are confidential, and involve a nasal swab.  Test results take around 2 to 4 days.

For more information, including test locations, visit https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com/covid-19-testing

Click here for additional information

06/06/20  County of Orange clarification for local businesses

Please read the following important media release from the County of Orange to Provide Clarification for Local Businesses After State Issues New Guidance for Reopening Additional Industries:

County of Orange Provides Clarification for Local Businesses After State Issues New Guidance for Reopening Additional Industries Santa Ana, Calif. (June 5, 2020) – The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) released new guidance for the reopening of additional sectors of economies in jurisdictions like Orange County that have already submitted an attestation and received approval to move deeper into Stage 2 of the State’s Resilience Roadmap. 

These newly issued guidance provides corresponding sectors with information on public health modifications they should implement prior to opening, and state that they may only reopen upon approval by the County Health Officer. 

Upon review of local data related to COVID-19 spread and Orange County’s readiness, the County Health Officer will make a final decision about the timing for re- opening a sector, which may happen no sooner than June 12, 2020. 

These sectors include: 

The County Health Officer will review Orange County’s epidemiological data including cases per 100,000 population, rate of test positivity, and local preparedness to support a health care surge, vulnerable populations and contact tracing, and give sector-by-sector approval for these industries to re-open as appropriate. The County looks forward to sharing approvals with the community via press releases. 

For further information related to the businesses outlined in the new order, please visit: 

www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/OPA/Pages/NR20-113.aspx. ## 

For questions related to COVID-19, visit www.ochealthinfo.com/novelcoronavirus, or follow the HCA on Facebook (@ochealthinfo) and Twitter (@ochealth). 

05/29/20 County of Orange Amended Health Order

Please read this very important media release about a new Amended Health Order and Strong Recommendations from the Orange County Health Officer.

Click here to read the Amended Health Order

OC Health Website

05/28/20 County of Orange Guidelines for Barbershops and Hair Salon reopening.

The State has announced further modifications to the current Health Orders as California, including Orange County, continues to move into “accelerated” Stage 2 reopening.  Under an amended set of guidelines, barbershops and hair salons are being allowed to reopen as long as they comply with specific operational guidelines meant to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The guidelines for reopening include the use of face coverings by both staff and customers, the removal of items like magazines, disinfection and sanitization at regular intervals, and appointments must be staggered in order to maintain social distancing. Nail salons are not yet allowed under the amended guidelines. For the complete list of guidelines for hair salons and barbershops, visit https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-hair-salons.pdf .

05/27/20  Webinars available from OC Health and OCBC

The Orange County Health Care Agency and the Orange County Business Council will be hosting a series of webinars designed to help businesses understand the recent Health Officer Orders and what it means to them.

On Thursday, May 28, the Retail Industry will be addressed.  The Friday, May 29, webinar will focus on Restaurants.  Other business sectors are encouraged to join the virtual meeting on Saturday, May 30.  All the webinars run from 3:30 pm to 4:15 pm.

To RSVP, or for more information, email ETeam@OCHCA.com.

05/26/20 County of Orange Stage Two Criteria

We are all excited that Orange County has been approved by the State to enter "accelerated" Stage 2 reopening.  With "accelerated" Stage 2, certain businesses, such as destination retail and dine-in restaurants, are allowed to reopen, contingent on their readiness to implement and comply with sector-specific guidance and restrictions.  

With this in mind, businesses must do the following to meet the Stage 2 criteria for reopening:

  • Perform a detailed risk assessment and implement a site-specific protection plan. 
  • Train employees on how to limit the spread of COVID-19, this includes learning to screen themselves for symptoms, and having them stay home if they exhibit those symptoms. 
  • Implement individual control measures and screenings. 
  • Implement disinfecting protocols. 
  • Implement the State’s physical distancing guidelines. 
  • Post the State’s industry-specific checklist in their workplaces. 
  • Require all OC residents to wear a cloth face covering visiting a retail, commercial or other place of business, and requires workers to wear them when they are not able to maintain at least 6 feet of physical distance from another person. 

Please refer to your specific industry’s guidance:  To see the State’s guidance for shopping centers, go to https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-shopping-centers.pdf.  For dine-in restaurants go to https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-dine-in-restaurants. To see the guidance for other industries go to https://covid19.ca.gov/industry-guidance/

Please visit the City’s Reopening Plan for helpful information on preparing your business’s reopening plan and for a list of local, state, and federal resources available to businesses during the pandemic. www.cityoforange.org/DocumentCenter/View/11090/COVID-Reopening-Plan---Businesses-and-Operations

Remember, we all share in the responsibility to fight COVID-19.   Keep practicing social distancing, limit what you touch, wash your hands frequently, avoid touching your face, and wear a face covering in public.  As we reopen more of our businesses, maintaining our vigilance against the spread of the virus is always our first line of defense.  

05/26/20 Orange County Health Officer’s Order and recommendations 

The County of Orange Health Officer issued a new Health Order and Strong Recommendations.  Please read the attached FAQs, which help clarify the Order and Recommendations as they relate to the approval by the State of California to move Orange County (OC) along the Governor’s "Resiliency Roadmap" further into Stage 2.

You will find the original Health Order and Strong Recommendations, and the online version of the FAQs at https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com/article/oc-health-officers-orders-recommendations

05/23/20 County of Orange Media Release

Please read these very important media release about a new Health Order and Strong Recommendations.  OC Health Care Agency Media Release

05/23/20 County of Orange moves into Stage Two 

Please read these very important media releases from the County of Orange about the approval from the State to move to an "accelerated" Stage 2 opening, and new Back2Business Initiative.

For several weeks, Orange County has been operating under an “early” Stage 2 of the State’s “4 Stage” COVID-19 reopening plan.  We are very pleased to report that the State has approved the County’s request to move to an “accelerated” Stage 2 reopening.

Under the “accelerated” Stage 2, destination retail and dine-in restaurants will be allowed to reopen, contingent on their readiness to implement and comply with sector-specific guidance and restrictions, which can be found at https://occovid19.ochealthinfo.com/guidelines.

When planning to reopen, all businesses must complete a detailed risk assessment and implement a site-specific protection plan to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19.  These plans may include social distancing, sanitation, screening and prevention, minimizing physical contact during transactions, and employee training. The County of Orange Back2Business Initiative will provide up to 1,000 small businesses with free access to floor plan software to help them meet the latest social distancing requirements. For more information, visit https://bit.ly/ocback2business

The City of Orange is committed to supporting our local Orange businesses as they plan to reopen.  Please visit the City’s Reopening Plan for helpful information on preparing your business’s reopening plan and for a comprehensive list of local, state, and federal resources available to businesses during the pandemic. www.cityoforange.org/DocumentCenter/View/11090/COVID-Reopening-Plan---Businesses-and-Operations

As we move through this reopening process, it is important to remember that we all share in the responsibility to fight COVID-19. Reopening more of our businesses will require continued success in combating the spread of the virus.  Keep practicing social distancing, limit what you touch, wash your hands frequently, avoid touching your face, and wear a face covering in public.

Click here for the Orange County Press Release 

County of Orange moves into Stage Two Press Release

05/18/20  County Partnership with UCI

The University of California, Irvine has informed us that they have partnered with the Orange County Health Care Agency for a large-scale, population-based study that is intended to generate a more accurate estimate of the COVID-19 pandemic in Orange.  Currently, the true rate of COVID-19 is unknown because it’s impossible to determine the actual number of infections without widespread testing of a representative sample.  

The results of this study are meant to help guide local health officials and elected officials in preparing policy, better identify at-risk populations, and understand how long immunity to the virus lasts.  It’s important to note that it’s not yet clear what level of antibodies is enough to confer near- or long-term immunity on those who have had COVID-19. Additional research will be necessary for that determination.

The survey will involve serological testing of a representative sample of 5,000 Orange County residents to determine if they have COVID-19 antibodies.  Study participants will be recruited soon, and testing is expected to take place in June. An initial report will be issued this summer, with another report released in early fall.

In a separate, smaller study, UCI scientists will examine 1,500 blood samples, which will be collected at 10 clinics around Orange County which is meant to provide officials a quick read on COVID-19 exposure rates. 

The UCI Program in Public Health has a COVID-19 Chatline, https://publichealth.uci.edu/ph/_home/covid19, that is available for general questions about COVID-19. The chatline is staffed Monday – Friday from 9 am to 6 pm PST and on weekends from 12pm to 4pm PST.  

04/29/20 County of Orange Press Release 

Please read this media release from the County of Orange on loaner laptops and hotspots being made available to job seekers impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Click here for page 1  Click here for page 2 

04/23/20 Orange County Social Service New Hotline Available 

Please read this important media release from the Orange County Social Services Agency on a new hotline for current in-home Supportive Services recipients during COVID-19 crisis.

Orange County Social Service Press Release 

04/22/20 Media Release requiring cloth face coverings for certain essential workers

Please read this important media release from the Orange County Health Care Agency on the new directive requiring cloth face coverings for certain essential workers.

Orange County Health Care Agency Media Release 

04/21/20  Media Release for OC Covid-19 Testing Network

Please read this important media release from the Orange County Health Care Agency on the launch of the OC COVID-19 Testing Network.

Orange County Health Care Agency Media Release

04/18/20 County COVID-19 Hotline Closing 

Starting April 18, the Orange County COVID-19 Public Information Hotline will close.

 Residents can continue to call the County’s general COVID information number at (833) 426-6411, which includes:

 • Orange County Health Care Agency – Health Referral Line, Behavioral Health Resources

 • Orange County Social Services Agency – Risk Benefits

 • Orange County Office on Aging – Resources for Seniors

 • Orange County District Attorney’s Office – Scams, Price Gouging

 • County of Orange Emergency Operations Center Hotline – Non-Medical Questions

 • Small Business Recovery

 • 2-1-1 Orange County

 Medical questions about the Coronavirus can be directed to the OC Health COVID-19 Hotline at (833) 426-6411.

 The Orange County Health Care Agency website at www.ochealthinfo.com/novelcoronavirus has information that is regularly updated regarding the status of COVID-19 in Orange County.

For questions about the City of Orange’s response to the Coronavirus, call the City hotline at (714) 744-7550, Monday-Thursday, and alternate Fridays, 7:30 am-5:30 pm.

04/14/2020 Media release from the Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector

Click here to read this media release from the Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector on Property Tax Penalty Cancellation Requests.

04/09/2020 OC Emergency Operations Center on recommending face coverings

Please click here to read this important media release from the Orange County Emergency Operation Center on recommending face coverings for essential businesses

04/10/2020  The County of Orange would like to remind you that creating a family plan is always a good idea.  

During our current COVID-19 pandemic, it is even more critical.

If you have children, and there becomes a need for you to be separated from them, planning ahead will make the process smoother for you, and easier on them.

You should:

1. Create an alternate caregiver list

2. Prepare authorization documents

3. Write down special instructions

4. Create a kid-friendly "go bag"

Click here for a Child’s Medical Consent form, and click here for an Alternate Caregiver form to help you get started on planning.

For more information, visit ready.gov/pandemic.  More templates can be found at bit.ly/occhildcare.

04/07/2020    Orange County Treasurer –Tax Collector

Please click here to read this important media release from the Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector on the upcoming property tax deadline.

We’re All in This Together

The California Department of Public Health would like to remind everyone to help look after each other.   Help make sure your neighbors, friends, and family members have the support they need by calling, texting, and (safely) knocking on doors.

 Click here for a Checklist to help you determine the best course of action if, and when, help may be required.

 For more information, visit www.covid19.ca.gov

04/03/2020    Orange County Emergency Operations Center: click here to read an important media release on creating a family crisis plan

Orange County Covid-19 Hotline Hours

Starting April 4, the Orange County COVID-19 Public Information Hotline will change its hour to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays.

 Callers to the hotline will have access to:

• Orange County Health Care Agency – Health Referral Line,       Behavioral Health Resources

•        Orange County Social Services Agency – Risk Benefits

•        Orange County Office on Aging – Resources for Seniors

•        Orange County District Attorney’s Office – Scams, Price  Gouging

•        County of Orange Emergency Operations Center Hotline – Non-Medical Questions

•        Small Business Recovery

•        2-1-1 Orange County

Medical questions about the Coronavirus can be directed to the OC Health COVID-19 Hotline at (833) 426-6411.

For questions about the City of Orange’s response to the Coronavirus, call the City hotline at (714) 744-7550, Monday-Thursday, and alternate Fridays, 7:30 am-5:30 pm.

04/02/2020    Orange County media release on State Guidelines

Please click here to read the Orange County media release on California State Guidelines for wearing face coverings in public:

The County of Orange has launched a new webpage, https://covid19info.ocgov.com, where the public can access all of the currently available COVID-19 data, and links to information on unemployment benefits, business recovery resources, tax relief and more.

For updates via text message, send OCCOVID19 to 888777 from the County Health Agency. You can also call the toll free County hotline for COVID-19 resources. Call (833) 426-6411 to be directed to any of the County Agencies providing public Coronavirus information.

For specific questions related to the effects of the State and County’s Health Directives on the City of Orange, you can call our City hotline at (714) 744-7550, Monday-Thursday 7:30 am-5:30 pm, and alternate Fridays 7:30 am-5:30 pm. The hotline is closed this coming Friday, and every other Friday.

COVID-19 OC Health Care Agency –Text Updates

The Orange County Health Care Agency now offers updates on COVID-19 via text messaging. Simply text OCCOVID19 to 888777 to receive updates on the ongoing Coronavirus situation. The County also provides a toll free hotline for Coronavirus (Covid-19) County resources. Call (833) 426-6411 to be directed to any of the County Agencies providing public Coronavirus information.

For specific questions related to the effects of the State and County’s Health Directives on the City of Orange, you can call our City hotline at (714) 744-7550, Monday-Thursday 7:30 am-5:30 pm, and alternate Fridays 7:30 am-5:30 pm. The hotline is closed this coming Friday, and every other Friday.

03/30/2020        Orange County Media Release

Click here to read this important media release by the Orange County Emergency Click here to read this important media release by the Orange County Emergency Operations Center: State of California Health Order Remains in Effect throughout Orange County until further notice

County of Orange Opens Business Recovery Call Center

The Orange County Community Services Department has opened a call center for businesses impacted by the current COVID-19 crisis.  The Economic & Business Recovery Call Center will offer information and resources to help Orange County businesses with information about available loans, utility reduction programs, and community resources mapping.  

Businesses can call (714) 480-6500, Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Bilingual operators will be also available.

For more information, visit www.occommunityservices.org.

03/27/2020    Orange County Toll Free Hotline-COVID-19

The County of Orange now provides a toll free hotline for Coronavirus (Covid-19) County resources.  Call (833) 426-6411 to be directed to any of the County Agencies providing public Coronavirus information. 

 You can also text OCCOVID19 to 888777 to receive updates on the ongoing Coronavirus situation.

 Please click here to read the full release with all of the information.

Please click here to read a media release from the County of Orange that explains the new way the County will be reporting COVID-19 information starting today:

03/26/2020    Orange County Media Release

Please click here to read a media release on non-approved COVID-19 tests from the Orange County Emergency Operations Center:

Please click here to read a media release on the COVID-19 situation from the Orange County Emergency Operations Center.

Please click here to read a media release on mental health resiliency from the Orange County Emergency Operations Center.

County COVID-19 PSA

The Orange County Health Care Agency has provided this public service announcement on the COVID-19 situation from Orange County Health Officer Dr. Nichole Quick and David Souleles, Director of Public Health Services.

03/23/2020    Orange County COVID-19 Hotline Hours Changed

The County has adjusted the hours of operation for their two COVID-19 hotlines to 9 am to 6 pm.  This includes both the Orange County Health Care Agency hotline for medical question regarding the Coronavirus, (800) 564-8448, and the County Emergency Operations Center hotline for answers about the Health Directives and other non-medical questions, at (714) 628-7085.

For specific questions related to the effects of the State and County’s Health Directives on the City of Orange, you can call our City hotline at (714) 744-7550, Monday-Thursday 7:30 am-5:30 pm, and alternate Fridays 7:30 am-5:30 pm. The hotline is open this coming Friday, and every other Friday.

The Orange County Water District has provided the following message about water safety:

The Orange County Water District wants to assure the public that the presence of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has not been detected in drinking-water supplies and has no impact on the quality or supply of tap water. 

California has some of the highest required levels of treatment for drinking water in the country. And per drinking water regulations established by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, your tap water is treated specifically to remove or kill pathogens, including viruses.

Locally, the District manages the Orange County Groundwater Basin which supplies up to 77% of drinking water to north and central Orange County. It tests water from approximately 1,500 locations throughout the basin, analyzes more than 20,000 samples each year and reports more than 400,000 results to ensure your water meets rigorous water quality standards.

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the public to purchase mass quantities of bottled water. While it is always advisable to stock bottles of water at home in case of an emergency impacting the water supply, COVID-19 will not disrupt water service to the 2.6 million people in the District’s service area, or for the millions of people who rely on public water systems across the country.

Additional information regarding the continued quality and reliability of tap water may be found at the Orange County Water District’s newly created COVID-19 webpage, www.ocwd.com/learning-center/covid-19/.

We’re All in this Together

Our local non-profits are always there when we need them, and now, they need us.  Here in Orange, we have a strong drive towards volunteerism, and we know that our community want to help.  If you’re looking for ways to make a difference, the County of Orange has activated its virtual "Emergency Volunteer Center," which is managed by OneOC.

If you are looking to volunteer, visit volunteers.oneoc.org.  Social distancing of 6 feet-or-more, and personal protective measures to prevent close contact, will be observed at volunteering opportunities.

If you are a non-profit looking for volunteers, please email OneOC at disaster@oneoc.org, and place in subject line: COVID Non-Profit Request.

Donations are also always appreciated. Click here for a flyer with active links to Orange County non-profits accepting donations, or click here for a link to the same flyer on Twitter.

OCTA BUS SCHEDULES MODIFIED

The Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) has informed the City of Orange that all OC Bus routes will temporarily shift to the Sunday service schedule, seven days a week, beginning Monday, March 23.  The Sunday schedule is about 40 percent of the typical amount of weekday bus service.  You can find the schedule, by route, on the OCTA website, www.OCBus.com.

The OC ACCESS paratransit system, which serves riders with physical or cognitive limitations, will continue to operate at full service levels.

For more information visit OCTA.net, or call (714) 636-7433.

03/18/2020      Clarification of OC Health Order

The County of Orange has released an amended Public Health Order.  Click here to read it in its entirety.

03/17/2020    OC Health order

Please click on this link to read a health order from the Orange County Health Agency (OC HEALTH.) This order is effective immediately – Please read in its entirety

this order prohibits gatherings of any size in the county; eliminates dining in at restaurants, and strongly encouraged those 65 and over and those with underlying health conditions to stay home.

For any questions about this directive, call the County of Orange Public Information Hotline at (714) 628-7085. 

Food Facility owners with questions should call Orange County Health/Environmental Health at (714) 433-6000.