The Virginia Department of Health is conducting a large-scale investigation of a facility in the Richmond metropolitan area including extensive testing. The results from this investigation are still being tabulated and will be available in the daily report on Saturday, April 4, 2020.
NOTE: VDH is no longer reporting the pending number of tests as testing capacity has expanded to include commercial laboratories. Commercial laboratories report all results to VDH. COVID-19 case data will be updated daily at 9 a.m.
- The Virginia Department of Health is responding to the outbreak of respiratory illness, called coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), that is caused by a novel (new) coronavirus.
- The outbreak was first detected in China in December 2019.
- On March 7, 2020 the first case of COVID-19 in Virginia was announced.
- COVID-19 has now been detected in more than 100 locations internationally.
- On March 11, the World Health Organization characterized COVID-19 as a pandemic.
- On March 12, Governor Northam declared a state of emergency in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
- Governor Ralph Northam issued Executive Order 53 that orders the closure of certain non-essential businesses, bans all gatherings of more than 10 people, and closes all K-12 schools for the remainder of the academic year. Governor Northam is also urging all Virginians to avoid non-essential travel outside the home, if and when possible. Food establishments are mandated to offer curbside takeout and delivery service only, or close to the public. This order goes into effect at 11:59PM on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 and will remain in place until 11:59PM on Thursday, April 23. The full text of the order can be found here and additional guidance and a Frequently Asked Questions guide can be found here.
- On March 30, Governor Ralph Northam issued Executive Order 55, a statewide Stay at Home order. The executive order takes effect immediately and will remain in place until June 10, 2020. The order directs all Virginians to stay home except in extremely limited circumstances. Individuals may leave their residence for allowable travel, including to seek medical attention, work, care for family or household members, obtain goods and services like groceries, prescriptions, and others as outlined in Executive Order Fifty-Three, and engage in outdoor activity with strict social distancing requirements.
- As of March 31, VDH is reporting widespread community transmission across the state. This means that COVID-19 is spreading within communities across Virginia.
- Most people with COVID-19 develop fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
- Healthcare professionals evaluating ill patients for suspected COVID-19 can request testing through a private laboratory. VDH approval is not required for this testing.
- Because of a limited number of tests available, testing performed at DCLS, Virginia’s state laboratory, is reserved for patients who meet VDH’s priority investigation criteria.
- Executive Order 51 "Authorization for the heads of executive branch agencies, on behalf of their regulatory boards as appropriate, and with the concurrence of their Cabinet Secretary, to waive any state requirement or regulation, and enter into contracts without regard to normal procedures or formalities, and without regard to application or permit fees or royalties. All waivers issued by agencies shall be posted on their websites."
- For media inquiries about statewide coronavirus efforts, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and include your deadline