Breaking News
More () »

California State of Emergency for COVID to end February 2023

The end of the order is still a few months away to give the health care system some flexibility to handle potential surges after the holidays.

CALIFORNIA, USA — More than two years after Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a State of Emergency for the coronavirus pandemic, the end of his emergency declaration is finally in sight.

Newsom announced Monday the emergency declaration will end on Feb. 28, 2023.

“Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been guided by the science and data – moving quickly and strategically to save lives. The State of Emergency was an effective and necessary tool that we utilized to protect our state, and we wouldn’t have gotten to this point without it,” said Governor Newsom. “With the operational preparedness that we’ve built up and the measures that we’ll continue to employ moving forward, California is ready to phase out this tool.” 

The move sets a path to phase out of the one of the tools California used for combating the pandemic. 

Newsom faced criticism over the years for the emergency declaration, with some arguing that he had too much power to bypass the legislative process. All but 5% of Newsom's executive actions regarding the pandemic were cut back around the 2-year mark, but the order was kept in place to help with testing, vaccinations, masks and staffing shortages for possible surges.

In a news release, officials said the end of the order is still a few months away to give the health care system some flexibility to handle potential surges after the holidays, and it also allows local partners to prepare for the order's phaseout.

After the declaration ends, the state will be able to make use of vaccines, boosters, testing, treatments and masking to battle the virus.

“California’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has prepared us for whatever comes next. As we move into this next phase, the infrastructure and processes we’ve invested in and built up will provide us the tools to manage any ups and downs in the future,” said Secretary of the California Health & Human Services Agency, Dr. Mark Ghaly. “While the threat of this virus is still real, our preparedness and collective work have helped turn this once crisis emergency into a manageable situation.”

While the order is slated to come to an end, Newsom will be looking toward two changes when the legislature returns. He'll aim for nurses to be able to dispense COVID therapeutics and for lab workers to process COVID tests.

Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R-Rocklin) issued the following statement in response to the governor's announcement.

"It is past time to end the State of Emergency and focus on the enormous hardships Californians are facing in their daily lives: soaring gas and grocery prices, surging crime, and a homelessness problem that gets worse by the day," Kiley said.

WATCH ALSO: Friday marks two years since Gov. Newsom declared COVID-19 state of emergency | Rynor Report

Before You Leave, Check This Out