A new study looks at just how effective stay-at-home orders can be in decreasing the number of coronavirus cases in an area.
FRIDAY, May 8, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A new study illustrates just how powerful a weapon social distancing and "stay-at-home" orders can be against the new coronavirus.
Data out of Washington state show that the number of people testing positive for coronavirus in outpatient clinics fell from nearly 18% of those tested at the end of March, to just 3.8% by April 16.
The only big change during that time? On March 16, Washington state closed bars and restaurants and put strict limits on all social gatherings. On March 23, Gov. Jay Inslee also announced a "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" order, asking state residents to shelter in place.
The rapid and steep declines in coronavirus infections documented in the new study "suggest that the early and aggressive physical distancing measures enacted in Washington state have influenced the course of the COVID-19 pandemic" there, concluded a team led by Dr. Keith Jerome. He's with the Division of Vaccine and Infectious Disease at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.