Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What does this Order do?
  2. When does the Order go into effect?
  3. How long does the Order last?
  4. Can the Order be changed?
  5. Where is the Order in effect?
  6. Who issued the Order?
  7. Do I need to get an official letter of authorization from the County to operate?
  8. Do I need to have a letter from my employer or other documentation to travel?
  9. What is the difference between “stay at home” and “social distancing”?
  10. Can I leave home to visit friends or family members if there is no urgent need or I am not performing an essential activity?
  11. Can I still get my mail and deliveries?
  12. Can I still order the things I need online and have them delivered to my residence?
  13. Can I go out to do laundry or have my laundry done?
  14. Can I get my prescriptions or other health care needs? Can I leave home to go to the pharmacy to get my prescription filled?
  15. What if I need to get healthcare from my medical provider?
  16. Can I still seek non-essential medical care like eye exams, teeth cleaning, elective procedures, etc.?
  17. Should I stock up on food, necessities like toilet paper, and on medicines?
  18. What should I do if I’m sick? If I or a family member need immediate medical attention, can I leave home to go to the doctor or hospital?
  19. Can I leave home to care for my elderly parents or friends who require assistance to care for themselves? Or a friend or family member who has disabilities?
  20. Can I visit loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facility, or other residential care facility?
  21. What if I can’t get out of the home?
  22. Can I leave home to go to my church, synagogue, or mosque?
  23. The Order prohibits non-essential travel on foot or bike -- does that mean that I can’t go on a walk or take a bike ride?
  24. Can I leave home to exercise?
  25. Can golf courses remain open?
  26. Am I allowed to go to a park or on a hike? Can I travel to a County park or open space?
  27. Can I go shopping for things other than food/groceries?
  28. Can I go to a bar/nightclub/theater?
  29. Can I go to a restaurant, café, coffee or tea shop, ice cream shop, or other foodservice location?
  30. Can I walk my dog/pet?
  31. Can I go to a vet or pet hospital if my pet is sick?
  32. I don’t cook, how can I purchase meals?
  33. How can I access free or reduced-price meals for myself or my family?
  34. Can I take my kids to the park and can we use playgrounds?
  35. Will all business offices and stores be required to close?
  36. What are “Essential Businesses”?
  37. I operate a farm, am I allowed to continue my operation and have employees report to work?
  38. What if my business is not considered an Essential Business? Does this Order require that I shut down my business facility?
  39. I currently receive benefits through Merced County’s Human Services Agency. Will this order interrupt my benefits?
  40. Does this Order require that schools shut down?
  41. Will this order prevent companies working on vaccines and testing for COVID-19 from continuing to do that work?
  42. Am I required to shut down?
  43. Does the Order require that businesses stop work that is necessary to our health care system?
  44. Can my company continue construction on a health care facility?
  45. My business principally manufactures, supplies, or repairs cell phones. Can it operate?
  46. Are non-profit organizations allowed to continue operating?
  47. What if some of the work my business does at its facility is essential and some is nonessential?
  48. What if I have a cafeteria at my worksite. Can it continue to operate to serve workers who are carrying out work exempted in the Order?
  49. Is the local government shutting down?
  50. I work for the government, Can I continue to go to work?
  51. What do I do if my employer requires me to go to work?
  52. I work in a hospital or medical clinic, but I’m not sure I’m essential. Should I continue to work? What if I’m over 60?
  53. What do I do about my kids? I have to work.
  54. Can bike repair shops continue to operate?
  55. Can my company continue to provide janitorial services?
  56. Can grocery stores, farmers markets, and other food retailers remain open?
  57. If my child’s school is providing food or meals, can I leave home to go to the school to pick up the food or meals?
  58. Can warehouses and distribution centers that supply businesses that ship and deliver stay open?
  59. I work for an essential infrastructure organization, can I leave home to go to work?
  60. What construction is allowed to continue?
  61. Can I operate a business that sells things that can be delivered to people’s homes? Can I shift more of my business to a delivery model?
  62. My business provides critical services and products for the federal government that we are required to provide on a time-certain basis--can we continue to manufacture these products?
  63. I work in a cemetery - can I go to work?
  64. Are daycare facilities allowed to operate?
  65. Can home service workers who clean homes continue to provide their services?
  66. I am a nanny. Will I get in trouble if I go to work?
  67. Can I get a ride in my favorite ride share/on demand service or a taxi?
  68. Can I take public transport (bus, subway, train)?
  69. Am I allowed to leave the areas covered by this Order to travel to/from a job outside the Bay Area? Does the Order allow me to leave the County?
  70. I am currently on vacation outside the County—Does the Order allow me to return home?
  71. If I’m outside the county travelling for vacation or business, am I allowed to come home?
  72. I’m visiting and staying in a hotel, with family/friends, or in a short-term rental. What should I do? Can I go home?
  73. What if I’m in a line and there isn’t six feet between me and others?
  74. What if my plumbing gets stopped up or there is another problem with necessary equipment at my home? How will I access those sorts of services?
  75. What do I do about my loved one who needs care from me?
  76. What happens if I don’t comply with this Order?
  77. Why is this Order in place?