Gov. Northam holds news briefing as Virginia cases near 1,500

Posted at 11:14 AM, Apr 01, 2020

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia Governor Ralph Northam held a news conference with public health officials at 2 p.m. Wednesday for an update on the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Virginia Department of Health on Wednesday confirmed there are now 1,484 COVID-19 cases and 34 deaths in the commonwealth.

The update will come two days after Northam issued a stay-at-home order, with some exceptions like shopping for food and seeking medical treatment.

"Please stay home as much as possible," Northam urged Virginians Monday. "This is a community-wide effort and I thank you for complying. This is a time of sacrifice. We need everyone to take this seriously and act responsibly."

In addition, the executive order directs all Virginia colleges to stop in-person classes, private campgrounds must close for short-term stays, and beaches will be closed statewide except for fishing and exercise.

“Our message to Virginians is clear: stay home. We know this virus spreads primarily through human-to-human contact, and that’s why it’s so important that people follow this order and practice social distancing," Northam said.

The Governor says the order is necessary to slow the spread of the virus and stop hospitals from being overwhelmed, but added case numbers in the state will continue to rise.

The executive order will remain in effect until June 10, unless amended or rescinded before then.

You can watch Governor Northam’s Wednesday briefing, here.