IV. OC Health Officer Orders & Recommendations FAQs

IV. OC Health Officer Orders & Recommendations FAQs

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Only those businesses and activities allowed to open under the tier assigned to Orange County may open, provided that such businesses and activities comply with all applicable restrictions for that tier. As of November 20, 2020, Orange County is assigned to the Tier 2 (Purple), the most restrictive tier under the California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy. See the following link for the list business and activities that may open under each tier and the restrictions that apply to each tier:


https://covid19.ca.gov/industry-guidance/. For public and HOA swimming pool industry-specific checklist posting requirements, please visit https://www.ochealthinfo.com/eh/water/pool.

In addition, they must post a separate document at a location visible to the public at the public entrance of the property that specifically includes an attestation by the business or activity owner and/or operator that it has done all the following prior to reopening:

  1. Completely reviewed the industry guidance that applies to your business or activity;
  2. Performed a detailed risk assessment and created a worksite-specific protection plan;
  3. Trained employees on how to limit the spread of COVID-19, including how to screen themselves for symptoms and when to stay home;
  4. Set up individual control measures and screenings;
  5. Put disinfection protocols in place;
  6. Established physical distancing guidelines;
  7. Established universal face covering requirements (with allowed exceptions) in accordance with CDPH guidelines at


All county residents and visitors who are providers for congregate settings, health care providers, or emergency responders in Orange County must obtain the seasonal flu vaccination unless a medical or religious exemption applies. See the U.S. Department of Labor’s Families First Coronavirus Response Act Q&A (Questions 56 and 57, respectively, available at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-questions for definitions of health care provider and emergency responder.

However, this order does not create an obligation, on the part of employers, public or private, to require employees obtain the seasonal flu vaccination as a term or condition of employment.

All County residents unless a medical or religious exemption applies.

No, businesses and sectors are not required to submit an individual re-opening plan or any other document to OC Health Care Agency for review or approval.

Please go to the following website and enter Orange County in the first field and the name of the category of your sector (e.g. restaurant, museum, etc.) in the second field and see if you may open in Orange County.


A cloth face-covering is a material that covers the nose and mouth; it can be secured to the head with ties or straps or simply wrapped around the lower face; it can be made of a variety of materials, such as cotton, silk, or linen; and a face-covering may be factory-made or sewn by hand, or can be improvised from household items such as scarfs, T-shirts, sweatshirts, or towels.

All county residents and visitors must wear face covering at all times when outside of their home. There are some exceptions, however, as stated below.

Individuals are exempt from wearing face coverings in the following specific settings:

  • Persons in a car alone or solely with members of their own household.
  • Persons who are working in an office or in a room alone.
  • Persons who are actively eating or drinking provided that they are able to maintain a distance of at least six feet away from persons who are not members of the same household or residence.
  • Persons who are outdoors and maintaining at least 6 feet of social distancing from others not in their household. Such persons must have a face covering with them at all times and must put it on if they are within 6 feet of others who are not in their household.
  • Persons who are obtaining a service involving the nose or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service.
  • Workers who are required to wear respiratory protection.
  • Persons who are specifically exempted from wearing face coverings by other CDPH guidance.

The following individuals are exempt from wearing face coverings at all times:

  • Persons younger than two years old. These very young children must not wear a face covering because of the risk of suffocation.
  • Persons with a medical condition, mental health condition, or disability that prevents wearing a face covering. This includes persons with a medical condition for whom wearing a face covering could obstruct breathing or who are unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove a face covering without assistance. Such conditions are rare.
  • Persons who are hearing impaired, or communicating with a person who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication.
  • Persons for whom wearing a face covering would create a risk to the person related to their work, as determined by local, state, or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines.

Note: Persons exempted from wearing a face covering due to a medical condition who are employed in a job involving regular contact with others must wear a non-restrictive alternative, such as a face shield with a drape on the bottom edge, as long as their condition permits it.

Please visit https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/guidance-for-face-coverings.aspx for additional information on face covering.

Because Orange County is now assigned to Tier 1 (Purple, Therefore, as the State Public Health Officer, all gatherings with members of other households and all activities conducted outside the residence, lodging, or temporary accommodation with members of other households must cease between 10 p.mm PST and 5 a.m. PST, except for those activities associated with the operation, maintenance, or usage of critical infrastructure or required by law. This order does not apply to persons experiencing homelessness. Nothing in this order prevents any number of persons from the same household from leaving their residence, lodging, or temporary accommodation, as long as they do not engage in any interaction with (or otherwise gather with) any number of persons from any other household, except as specifically permitted herein.

For additional information please visit


Please call the OC Health Care Agency’s COVID-19 Hotline at (714) 834-2000 or email ETeam@ochca.com. Community members with questions or concerns about businesses operating in non-compliance may contact their local law enforcement’s non-emergency line.

It requires all county residents and visitors who know that they have been in close contact (as defined in the Order) with a person diagnosed with or likely to have COVID-19 to quarantine themselves for 10 days.

Starting on Day 11 through Day 14, you must use paper surgical face mask or respirator at all times during work and continue to use face coverings when outside the home. You must also self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms through Day 14 and if symptoms occur, immediately self-isolate and contact the OC Health Care Agency or your healthcare provider and seek testing. You must also adhere strictly to all recommended non-pharmaceutical interventions, including maintaining a distance of at least 6 feet from others, through Day 14 after last exposure.

The following persons must quarantine themselves for 14 days:

  • All persons who reside (i) in a high-risk congregate living setting (e.g. skilled nursing facilities, prisons, jails, shelters) or (ii) with severely immunosuppressed persons (e.g. bone marrow or solid organ transplants, chemotherapy).
  • Absent workplace staffing shortage, all persons who work (i) in a high-risk congregate living setting (e.g. skilled nursing facilities, prisons, jails, shelters) or (ii) with severely immunosuppressed persons (e.g. bone marrow or solid organ transplants, chemotherapy).

You cannot leave your place of quarantine except to receive necessary medical care or to obtain such other goods or services necessary for their basic subsistence.

The following categories of persons are not subject to the quarantine order:

  • Health care providers and emergency responders, as defined by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Families First Coronavirus Response Act Q&A (see Questions 56 and 57, respectively, available at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-questions).
  • Social workers in residential assisted living facilities.

All those facilities wherein a resident and/or employee is diagnosed with COVID-19 must cancel these activities within 24 hours.

The facility may resume these activities only after the facility has completed two consecutive rounds of COVID-19 tests for all residents and employees that are at least 7 days apart and the tests have all returned negative.

The order will end when County’s COVID-19 transmission rate drops below 8 cases/100,000 persons.