After the state's first fatality from the new coronavirus, COVID-19, California Gov. Gavin Newsom has declared a state of emergency.
State officials say the declaration will make additional resources available, formalize emergency actions already underway, and help the state prepare for broader spread of the coronavirus.
“The State of California is deploying every level of government to help identify cases and slow the spread of this coronavirus,” said Governor Newsom. “This emergency proclamation will help the state further prepare our communities and our health care system in the event it spreads more broadly.”
The state says the emergency proclamation includes provisions that protect consumers against price gouging, allow for health care workers to come from out of state to assist at health care facilities, and give health care facilities the flexibility to plan and adapt to accommodate incoming patients.
Health officials say an elderly patient who died in Northern California was probably exposed to the virus during a cruise to Mexico in February.
Meanwhile, authorities say a medical screener at Los Angeles International Airport has also contracted the virus and is one of six new confirmed cases in the state.
Authorities say 53 people statewide have tested positive for the virus.