Governor John Carney on Sunday signed the seventh modification to his State of Emergency declaration, ordering all out-of-state travelers into Delaware to immediately self-quarantine for 14 days to fight the spread of COVID-19.
Under Sunday’s order, anyone who enters Delaware from another state must immediately self-quarantine for 14 days. The 14-day period is measured from the time of entry into Delaware or for the duration of the individual’s presence in Delaware, whichever is shorter.
Carney’s order also applies to anyone who has entered Delaware in the last 14 days.
The order does not apply to travelers who are merely passing through Delaware. Anyone who lives out-of-state and commutes to Delaware for essential work is strongly encouraged to work from home. Sunday’s order does not apply to those traveling to care for members of their family. Individuals under self-quarantine can leave their homes to seek medical care.
Carney’s order will take effect at 8 a.m., Monday, March 30.
“Now’s not the time to visit Delaware. We’re facing a serious situation here that is getting worse,” said Carney. “Delawareans need to stay at home, and anyone from another state visiting Delaware should immediately self-quarantine for two weeks. Everyone needs to take this threat seriously. Our goal is to limit a surge in COVID-19 cases that would overwhelm our hospital system. We’ll get through this - but everyone needs to pitch in.”
Rehoboth Beach City Manager Sharon Lynn issued a statement shortly after the governor’s declaration. She said the city will be following the order for those traveling into Rehoboth.
Law enforcement may conduct traffic stops, limited in scope to public health and quarantine questions on vehicles registered in other states, said Lynn.
“Please, know that this pandemic is very serious and has not yet peaked in our area,” said Lynn. “Please, continue to shelter-in-place, and please heed the warnings to keep you and your loved ones safe.”
Self-quarantine requires that an individual stay in a quarantine location (home, hotel room or rented lodging); does not go to work, school or public areas; does not use public transportation; separates from other individuals in a residence as much as possible; and avoids sharing personal items. Everyone should continue to follow basic hygiene guidance from the Delaware Division of Public Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
This self-quarantine requirement shall not apply to public health, public safety, or healthcare workers, or any other individual assisting an essential business or providing an emergency service related to COVID-19.
Sunday’s order has the force and effect of law. Any failure to comply with the provisions contained in a Declaration of a State of Emergency or any modification to a Declaration of the State of Emergency constitutes a criminal offense.
The Delaware Department of Justice has issued guidance to state and local law enforcement with additional details about enforcement of Carney’s emergency declaration. In accordance with Sunday’s order, law enforcement may conduct traffic stops - limited in scope to public health and quarantine questions - on vehicles registered in other states.
Delawareans with general questions about COVID-19 or their exposure risk can call the Division of Public Health’s Coronavirus Call Center at 1-866-408-1899, or 711 for individuals who are hearing-impaired, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Questions can also be submitted by email at DPHCall@delaware.gov.
The Delaware Division of Public Health is announcing one additional fatality related to COVID-19, and is providing an update on the number of positive cases reported in the state.
In total, six Delawareans have passed away due to complications from COVID-19. The most recent death involves a 79-year-old female from New Castle County who was not hospitalized. The individual had underlying health conditions. The source of exposure is related to travel to a state with positive COVID-19 cases. To protect personal health information, DPH will not disclose additional information about the individual who passed away.
There have been 232 total laboratory-confirmed cases in the state since March 11. This includes 18 additional cases since Saturday. Of the Delawareans diagnosed with COVID-19, 141 are from New Castle County, 25 are from Kent County, and 66 are from Sussex County. The total number of positive cases represents a cumulative total of cases, including individuals who are currently ill, and those who are considered recovered. Nine Delaware residents have recovered from COVID-19. Patients are considered fully recovered seven days after the resolution of their symptoms (three days after symptoms resolve, they are no longer required to self-isolate at home; however, they must continue to practice strict social distancing for the remaining four days).
Of the 232 cases, 114 are male and 118 are female. The individuals range in age from 1 to 90. Thirty-three individuals are currently hospitalized, nine are critically ill. The source of exposure for many of these positive cases is unknown, which indicates community spread of the virus is occurring in the state. In an effort to provide more demographic information to the public, additional information has been incorporated into Delaware’s data dashboard located at de.gov/coronavirus. DPH cannot confirm specific information about any individual case even if other persons or entities disclose it independently.
DPH is also announcing a change in its call center operating hours. Due to a reduced volume of calls, the DPH call center will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. It will continue to operate from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday until further notice. The call center number is 1-866-408-1899.