The ICU availability for the greater Bay Area Region just dropped to 12.9 percent, triggering a Regional Stay Home Order which will go into effect on Thursday, December 17 at 11:59PM and will remain in effect until at least January 8, 2021.

As such, interhousehold gatherings of any size, all outdoor dining, and all salon/spa services, along with indoor gym operations, will be prohibited; hotel and short-term stays will be restricted to essential workers/needs; and retail capacities will be restricted for all eleven counties in the region, which includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano and Sonoma counties.

The Bay Area order will be extended past January 8 if the the region’s ICU capacity isn’t projected to meet or exceed 15 percent for the following month.

In San Francisco, which preemptively adopted the State’s Stay Home Order last week, the 7-day average number of daily new COVID-19 cases has jumped to 237 with at least 150 local hospital beds now occupied by COVID-19 patients and 42 people in an ICU, a number which had previously peaked at 38 back in July.  Keep in mind that hospitalizations tend to lag case rate trends by around two weeks.

UPDATE (12/18): With the average COVID-19 test positive rate in San Francisco nearing 4 percent for the first time since May, the average number of daily new COVID-19 cases diagnosed in the city has ticked up to a new pandemic high of 246 with at least 164 local hospital beds now occupied by confirmed COVID-19 patients and 39 people in an ICU.

UPDATE (12/24): COVID-19 Case Rate in San Francisco Hits a New High, Bay Area Stay Home Order likely to be extended.

UPDATE (01/07/21): As projected, Bay Area Stay Home Order Will Be Formally Extended.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by OMN

    What’s the source for the SF dashboard?

  2. Posted by ExSFLandlord

    With a large shortage of ICU beds in the state, I have to ask this question. As a legal U.S. citizen in the high risk category I’d like to know if I’m competing for a ICU bed should I need one with an Illegal citizens? Considering CA is sanctuary state, I’d like to see a brake down of legal U.S. citizens verses illegal citizens occupying the ICU beds in say San Francisco county or San Mateo county.

    And for you haters…think about your loved ones around you who may be in the high risk category before you fire your slings and arrows.

    • Posted by OMN

      Just… Ugh

    • Posted by truth

      Never a missed opportunity…

      I actually think that anti-maskers and “COVID-hoaxers” should be given lower priority over those whose believe in science (typically the same ones spouting anti-immigrant rhetoric). After all, they are the reason we are in this situation.

    • Posted by Happy tree Friend

      This is supposed to be a real estate forum, not an open space for haters.

    • Posted by Mao Zedong

      Actually, landlords should be the last to receive care so that their assets may be seized and re-distributed to the un-housed and the poor.

      And for you haters, I’d just like to point out that the poster above is advocating for the deliberate genocide of non-citizens via the intentional deprivation of critical care in the face of a deadly pathogen.

    • Posted by SFRealist

      That is a key question. Before answering, think about the taxes which are paid by noncitizens. Whether they are legal or not, they all pay taxes.

      Seeing as they pay money to the government, it sure seems to me that they should be as entitled to services as anyone else. It would be unfair to collect their tax dollars and then not give them the same care as anyone else.

    • Posted by Current SF Landlord

      One person’s life isn’t more important than another’s. To even think that is repulsive.

      Rather than worry about immigrants, how about the morons that refuse to follow guidelines. They’re the sole reason why it’s getting worse.

      • Posted by Cave Dweller

        Between a 89 yr person and a 10 yr old child, who do you think should be given the preference for treatment assuming a 10 yr old has 100% recovery whereas an 89 yr old has about 20% recovery chance?

        Practically speaking people who have money do express the relative importance of their life by purchasing housing and services that meets their security and health concerns in comparison to people who do not have that money. (The facts of very expensive housing in San Francisco boldly underline this salient point).

        Does it matter then what one thinks when one can act?

    • Posted by tipster

      The good news is this will never be a problem for you. If you call for an ambulance while short of breath from Covid, there will be 50 homeless people ahead of you being treated for their nightly overdoses. You have an address, so your call for an ambulance will be instead routed to the coroner. See, no competition for ICU beds for you.

      The serious answer is that the number of ICU beds is based on the population of the area, and the illegal immigrants are counted towards that population. So there really was never any issue about this. And although they get the virus in disproportionate numbers, I would suspect most ICU cases for Covid are people past retirement age, and few illegal immigrants stay that long. So I doubt they are taking any more ICU beds than were planned for them, and more likely, fewer.

      When you get the bill, however, that bill will be for your care and all the people who didn’t pay. You can be proud to pay for their care, as they probably paid in taxes about ten cents for every dollar in services they require, the remainder of which you also paid for. But as someone noted above, as long as they paid one penny in taxes, the fact that they required thousands of dollars in services for their stay is irrelevant: once they pay that penny, they are entitled to tens of thousands in free hospital care regardless of whether that penny even begins to cover the services they use, because it suddenly somehow makes them “taxpayers”, even though they are actually “tax receivers”.

      Seriously though, I don’t have any problem with someone slipping over a porous border to better their lives: you’d do the same thing, or at least I would. If you want to complain about anyone, complain about the politicians who keep the border nice and porous to fulfill the wishes of their billionaire donors while pretending to look out for the middle class whose jobs the immigrants supplant. You and your neighbors keep voting for them: you only have yourselves to blame. Did you see that joke of a border wall Trump tried to replace? How that didn’t open everyone’s eyes as to what the politicians on both sides (and the press – owned by the billionaire class) have been doing for you (to you?) is just beyond me.

      • Posted by SFRealist

        What’s the basis for your claim that they pay ten cents in taxes for every dollar or services they require?

    • Posted by Dan

      As a doctor, I could never imagine my colleagues checking immigration status to make a determination on who gets an ICU bed, and I feel sad for those who would want to deny undocumented people health care. However, if it makes you feel better, undocumented people in SF who are seriously ill are likely to be hospitalized at ZSFG. People with no insurance who show up in other hospital ERs are likely to be transferred to ZSFG if they need an inpatient bed. So it’s unlikely you will be competing for ICU beds with undocumented people at other hospitals, unless you are uninsured. But maybe you can stay at home, and mask up and maintain social distance when you leave the house, to lower the chances a doctor ever needs to choose whether to save your life or the life of someone without immigration documents.

    • Posted by Notcom

      I smell a ‘rattus carolinas’ here: according to an earlier post the OP doesn’t even live here anymore, so perhaps s/he is really – or should be – concerned with capacity at Mayberry General.

    • Posted by Fishchum

      @ExSFLandlord – Disgusting comment.

  3. Posted by wilson

    On a more productive note, I’ve been wondering what is the critical component to creating an ICU bed? Personnel or equipment? I understand that in dire cases patients can be moved to a distant open bed. But transporting the critically ill has many problems.

    What’s the obstacle to moving the ICU bed instead? If NorCal has capacity, can doctors and/or equipment be moved from there to SoCal?

    • Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

      At this point the limit is trained personnel. Since the original March outbreak the USA has manufactured a large amount of ventilators and related equipment.

      The situation might not be so dire though. While it requires many months of training to become officially certified as a Respiratory Technician, the basics of operating a ventilator and caring for a vent dependent patient can be learned in a few days. So in an emergency we could fill in with lay people.

    • Posted by jimbo

      at one point early in the pandemic, they were planning to reopen part of the CPMC in Laurel Heights as a contingency I wonder if thats still an option

  4. Posted by What A Town

    SF has done a good job at keeping a handle on the virus. Credit to London even if she is celebrating in the French laundry. Let’s hope she can do the same with this latest surge.

  5. Posted by Zugamenzio Farnsworth

    All this hoopla about covid this, covid that, and my pal that lives in the Tenderloins says all “h*&^*&^ breaking out there the whole year. Said one of the less fortunate screamed right in his face yesterday, as he struggled to actually walk down the sidewalk (was totally filled with addicts, dealers, homeless, mentally ill). So on the one hand, let’s be real, real careful, but on the other hand, if you’re basically unable and or unwilling to care for yourself, or if you’re just somehow preying on the aforementioned…no problem! In fact, we, the city, will cater it. I’ve finally figured out why SF has so many hills. They’re all made of leftover BS.

  6. Posted by Another anon

    I’d love to know who actually gets the virus. I’ve gone to public places (e.g. grocery stores, outdoor restaurants) nearly every single day since the outbreak began, and have not gotten sick, nor has a single person that I know of in CA. I take only the most basic precautions like mask and handwashing but that’s it.

    Frankly I’d love to eat a virus sandwich right now, get sick for a couple weeks and get an immunity passport that allows me to go anywhere at any time. I have no problem signing a waiver that blocks me from going to the ICU. I been sick maybe 2 days in the last 25 years and will happily take my chances.

    • Posted by [haighter]

      same here… throughout this whole ordeal there are only a few people I know who’ve gotten sick with covid, both of whom live outside CA. I WFH and wear a mask due to the requirements, but I frequently visit retail stores, grocery stores, socialize with friends, travel to get a change of scenery while working remote, etc, as do many people in my circle. I’m baffled by the people who will follow yet another SAH order.

    • Posted by Mao Zedong

      The evidence is pretty clear that those who are getting sick are people who don’t have the luxury of working from home, i.e, those who are often forced to be in close proximity to others in high-risk industries. Oddly enough, those getting sick are often working the industries you frequent with minimal precautions (grocery workers, wait staff, and those who work the factories that would otherwise supply you your virus sandwich). Sounds like your personal circle is more of a reflection of your class and status more than an indicator of the reality on the ground. But by all means, please go lick every door knob you see if you think this thing is no biggie, that’ll show ’em.

    • Posted by Adam

      Wow, you sure sound privileged and uninformed and, frankly, dangerous. Anyone can get it. My client did and died. My brother in law and niece and nephew now have it. My friend’s father got it and died. You can get it and be asymptomatic and not know you have it and give it to others. Pay attention and stop being an idiot, please for the sake of us all.

      • Posted by jimbo

        i know 2 medical professionals in their 40s who’ve died, and at least 3 more hospitalized and who had symptoms for 2+ months, 1 with ongoing neurological issues. Death is not the only poor outcome.

        There was an article in Jama yesterday showing 14K excess deaths so far this year in ages 18-49. that’s despite the fact that deaths from accidents are way down. young people can get really sick, young people can have lingering effects, potentially for a lifetime, and young people die, and young people spread. young people keeping this disease widespread may be the single biggest challenge to getting it under control

        • Posted by Brian M

          My landlady is (or was) a Mexican doctor and her medical school classmates back in Mexico seem to be dropping like flies. It’s pretty awful down there as well 🙁

    • Posted by Southsider

      That’s a dumb idea. Unless you just don’t give a crap about other people’s lives. 18-49 year old have the most cases and therefore likely the main source of the spread to older folks and folks with preexisting conditions that may actually die from it. Just because you don’t die doesn’t mean you getting it won’t cause someone else to die eventually.

    • Posted by SocketSite

      At least 19,445 San Francisco residents have so far contracted COVID-19 and 172 have died. At the same time, the average number of daily new cases identified in the city, which had dropped to under 30 in October, is now up to 242 and climbing.

      • Posted by Cave Dweller

        What is the 10 yr, 20yr 50yr average outgoing rate for San Francisco? How does this seasons outgoing rate compare to other non COVID-19 seasons? Does San Francisco City Dept of Public Health put out these numbers?

        • Posted by Jeffrey W. Baker

          The premature death rate is about 2500 per year in SF, so another 172+ is a fairly large increment. SF vital statistics only issues irregular reports about births and deaths, so you have to go by CDC press releases (which you can view on FRED).

          • Posted by That Guy

            What’s the “premature death rate”?

            There are ~ 5,000 deaths from all causes in San Francisco in recent years. Not sure how many are “premature”.

    • Posted by R. Koch

      Our biggest problem right now is we have forgotten how bad infectious disease epidemics can be. This happened, I’m guessing, because we mostly won the war against pathogens. More than due to the shenanigans of ignorant leaders or craven politicians, the public is unable to mobilize because it has forgotten the gravity of infectious outbreaks.

      To me, it would seem obvious: infectious disease is the greatest threat we face, greater than war, disaster, or just about anything else. You think economic depression is bad? Just wait until a sufficiently virulent and contagious pathogen appears at your doorstep.

      But, sadly, we’ve just completed the dismantling of the infrastructure we’d built to fight infectious disease. For example, one might be led to ask: ‘Why did the bay area 100/150 years ago have such a large hospital resource when it had 1/10th the population of today?’

      So, a little history. I’ll skip the Trump administration’s latest dismantling of our public health infrastructure, to about 50 years ago. The U.S. Federal government played a significant role in combatting epidemics. A component of that effort was the Public Health Service hospital system, which was closed by the Reagan administration in 1981.

      A useful primer in images regarding former Federal disease fighting capability is “Images from the History of the Public Health Service, Disease Control and Prevention: Fighting the Spread of Epidemic Diseases“. That page states:

      “The prevalence of major epidemic diseases such as smallpox, yellow fever, and cholera spurred Congress to enact a national law in 1878 to prevent the introduction of contagious and infectious diseases into the United States, later extending it to prevent the spread of disease among the states.”

      San Francisco was home to a Public Health Service hospital in the Presidio. It was closed in 1981, and eventually was converted to rental housing. Lou Piote’s photographs of the abandoned hospital give the best sense of the scope of the resource that was lost (480 beds at closure).

      California is currently tied for 3rd to last in number of hospital beds per capita in the U.S.

      • Posted by Cave Dweller

        What is the purpose of educating people about pathogens/pandemics on a real-estate forum? What do you think about the situation where improved human longevity is a major contributor towards ecological damage by way of increased consumption of resources and generation of waste?

        What are your thoughts on income inequality and lack of services for majority of human population who also otherwise (unwittingly or unintentionally) contribute to development of pathogens and spread of disease?

        Would (or do ) you support border controls to disallow immigrants (who could be hosts to several foreign pathogens) from under and undeveloped nations?

        Please answer objectively and truthfully!

  7. Posted by SocketSite

    UPDATE: With the average COVID-19 test positive rate nearing 4 percent in San Francisco for the first time since May, the average number of daily new COVID-19 cases diagnosed in the city has ticked up to a pandemic high of 246 with at least 164 local hospital beds now occupied by confirmed COVID-19 patients and 39 people in an ICU.

    • Posted by Ada

      Why bury this in old posts? If SS wants to be on top of the situation, you guys should put up front – just sayin’

  8. Posted by SocketSite

    UPDATE (12/24): COVID-19 Case Rate in San Francisco Hits a New High, Bay Area Stay Home Order likely to be extended.

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