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As COVID-19 Crisis Escalates in Capital Region, Governor Hogan Issues Stay at Home Order Effective Tonight

As the COVID-19 crisis escalates in the National Capital Region, Governor Larry Hogan today issued a Stay at Home order to protect public health and safety. The order, which takes effect at 8:00 p.m. tonight, states that no Maryland resident should leave their home unless it is for an essential job or for an essential reason, such as obtaining food or medicine, seeking urgent medical attention, or for other necessary purposes.

“This is a deadly public health crisis—we are no longer asking or suggesting that Marylanders stay home, we are directing them to do so,” said Governor Hogan. “No Maryland resident should be leaving their home unless it is for an essential job or for an essential reason such as obtaining food or medicine, seeking urgent medical attention, or for other necessary purposes.”

Below is a comprehensive list of the actions the administration announced today:

STAY AT HOME ORDER. No Maryland resident should be leaving their home unless it is for an essential job or for an essential reason, such as obtaining food or medicine, seeking urgent medical attention, or for other necessary purposes.

  • Additional Guidance for Businesses. In addition, only essential businesses are allowed to remain open in Maryland, and those businesses must make every effort to scale down their operations in order to reduce the number of required staff, to limit interactions with customers, and to institute telework for as much of the workforce as is practical. This order does not change what businesses are deemed essential or nonessential.
  • Out-of-State Travel. No Marylander should be traveling outside of the state unless such travel is absolutely necessary. Those who have traveled outside of the state should self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • Penalties. This order is to be enforced by state and local law enforcement. Knowingly and willfully violating this order is a misdemeanor, and on conviction, offenders may be subject to imprisonment not exceeding one year or a fine not exceeding $5,000 or both.
  • Curbside Pickup. Restaurants may continue selling food and drink on a carry-out or drive-through basis; however, because residents of Maryland are not permitted to leave their homes to purchase products from nonessential businesses, curbside pickup at nonessential businesses is no longer permitted. Read the interpretive guidance.
  • Guidance for Campgrounds. Campgrounds are now required to close, with the exception to residents of recreational vehicles at campgrounds who genuinely have no other viable place of residence. These individuals should continue to comply with CDC guidelines regarding social distancing. Read the interpretive guidance.

This afternoon, Marylanders received a wireless emergency alert regarding this order, which will become effective at 8:00 p.m. Read the governor’s order.

NEW TESTING SITES FOR PATIENT REFERRALS. Governor Hogan announced the opening of four Maryland drive-thru COVID-19 screening and testing sites. There is no charge at any of these sites. However, testing is strictly limited to Marylanders who have a referral from their health care provider and who have an appointment to be tested.

  • In coordination with the Maryland Department of Health, the Maryland Department of Transportation, the State Highway Administration, the Maryland State Police, and local partners have begun offering drive-thru testing for COVID-19 at three Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program (VEIP) stations in Glen Burnie, Waldorf, and Bel Air.

  • A Prince George’s County COVID-19 screening and testing site opens today at FedEx Field in partnership with the University of Maryland Medical System, the National Guard, the Maryland State Police, and Prince George’s County Police. Residents can call the Prince George’s County Health Department at (301) 883-6627 for more information.

HOSPITAL SURGE UPDATES. The governor provided the following updates on the state’s ongoing hospital surge efforts:

  • FEMA delivered 250 bed packages to the Baltimore Convention Center field hospital and the Maryland National Guard is currently constructing the site.

  • The State of Maryland assisted the University of Maryland Medical System in starting construction to reopen the 135-bed Laurel Hospital and is currently contracting for staff and equipment for the site.

  • The state ordered 500 additional bed packages for on-site surge expansion with an option for another 500 beds, which will be deployed to sites based on need and the location of any coronavirus hotspots.

  • The state ordered 100 advanced medical tents to provide for an additional 1,000 beds for on-site surge expansion at hospitals and convention centers.

  • Maryland is coordinating with the D.C. government to ensure that regional surge capacity is addressed by engaging MedStar and Kaiser Permanente. Kaiser is planning to surge another 500 beds throughout the region, including an increase of 218 beds at their Maryland facilities.

UPDATE ON ECONOMIC RELIEF PACKAGE. Governor Hogan provided an update on the $175 million economic relief package he announced last week.

  • He is authorizing an additional $2 million to the state’s COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund, bringing this fund to a total of $9 million.
  • $8.8 million has been provided to more than 400 small businesses across the state to help more than 8,000 Marylanders who work in small businesses keep their jobs.
  • More than 5,300 applications have been submitted for the state’s small business relief fund, and more than 11,000 applications have been submitted for new grant funding.
  • Information and resources about these programs are available at businessexpress.maryland.gov.

WAIVING FAMILY CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE MARYLAND CHILDREN’S HEALTH PROGRAM. Governor Hogan has issued an emergency order which temporarily suspends any requirement that families have to pay premiums into the Maryland Children’s Health Program so that families will not lose coverage during the crisis. Read the governor’s order.

REMOTE NOTARIZATIONS. The governor has issued an order temporarily waiving the in-person requirement for notarizing documents. Read the governor’s order.

For health resources regarding COVID-19, including case counts and clinician guidance, Marylanders should visit coronavirus.maryland.gov.