Stay at home orders for the Bay Area region, including San Mateo County, are set to continue for at least another week as area intensive care capacity remains low. 

After shutting down for three weeks on Dec. 17, the Bay Area region is facing continued closures of some nonessential businesses and activities, including gatherings of any size. The state is set to announce an extension of the restrictions on Saturday, Jan. 9, as long as the region reports 15 percent or lower ICU capacity. On Thursday, the state reported 3.5 percent ICU capacity in the Bay Area. 

In San Mateo County on Thursday, just four ICU beds remained available countywide. 

“There is zero chance (the stay at home order) is going to be lifted (this week),” said Preston Merchant, San Mateo County public information officer. 

Also announced this week is a statewide order to cancel most elective surgeries and to require regions where hospitals are not overflowing to accept transfer patients from across the state. It’s too soon to know how this policy will affect Bay Area hospitals, which have just a few beds apiece. 

On Thursday, the county reported more than 27,000 cases total, with more than 9,000 appearing in the last 30 days. This third spike has been the worst yet for the region, with cases hitting record peaks of 492 on Dec. 2, 475 on Dec. 15, and 478 on Dec. 28.

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