TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - On Wednesday, Governor Ron DeSantis announced phase one of his plan to reopen Florida from the coronavirus lockdowns.
The phase will begin on Monday, May 4th except in the hardest-hit counties of Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach. Restaurants and retail stores will be allowed to reopen with limited capacity.
Here's what is allowed as Florida reopens:
- Restaurants can offer outdoor seating with 6-foot spacing between tables and indoor seating is limited to 25-percent capacity.
- Retail stores can operate at 25-percent of indoor capacity.
- Elective surgeries can resume.
- No changes to closures for bars, nightclubs, gyms, theaters, and personal services like salons and hairdressers.
- Schools remain distance-learning only.
- Visits to senior living facilities are still prohibited.
- Pharmacists in Florida will now be allowed to administer COVID-19 tests.
- Local governments will be allowed to have more restrictive policies than the state.
Phase one also includes guidance to avoid socializing in groups of more than 10, while face coverings are recommended in all face-to-face interactions.
Vulnerable individuals should avoid close contact with people outside of the home.
For the full announcement by Governor DeSantis, including the more details on Florida's response to COVID-19 and what guidelines the plan to reopen will follow, watch below.
If you display coronavirus symptoms, you should contact a local health organization and make them aware of your condition prior to arrival while also following specific instructions or guidelines they may have. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 and let them know if you have been infected or believe that you may be.
If you are infected, a medical professional or another authority will likely advise that you remain isolated while sick. This includes staying at home and not going into public places or large events.
Please visit the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage for information and guidance regarding COVID-19 in Florida. For any other questions related to COVID-19 in Florida, please contact the Department’s dedicated COVID-19 Call Center by calling 1-(866) 779-6121. The Call Center is available 24 hours a day. Inquiries may also be emailed to COVIDemail@example.com.
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