CHICAGO (CBS) — Indiana’s stay at home order, set to expire on Monday, was extended by two more weeks to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus. Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb made that announcement on Friday.
Also, Friday, Indiana deaths from COVID-19 topped 100, the highest single day increase. “These numbers are a signal that we are at the start of this surge, but just the start,” Holcomb said. Also, Friday, Holcomb said President Trump has approved his request for a national disaster declaration, which clears the way for additional federal money.
Holcomb said there will be some changes to the current executive order, which will be announced on Monday. He said issuing only a two-week order allows his administration to be more nimble and adjust to facts on the ground.
Models suggest the outbreak may be peaking toward the middle to end of the month.
Under the existing order, which now extends through April 20, residents should only go outside for essential needs, like food or medicine. All non-essential business will remain closed and employees asked to work from home. State workers are limited to essential functions, such as police and corrections workers. Other workers will conduct business remotely.
Essential businesses include grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, police stations, fire stations, hospitals, doctor’s offices, laundromats, daycare centers, health care facilities, garbage pickup, public transit, and public service hotlines. Religious services are canceled, but many churches are posting them online.
Essential activities include health and safety reasons, necessary supplies and services, outdoor activity, certain types of essential work, and to take care of others. Running or walking outside is allowed, provided people stay at least six feet apart.
Marion County, which includes Indianapolis, has extended its own stay at home order until May 1.
On Thursday, Holcomb ordered all K-12 schools to close for the remainder of the school year. Students will learn remotely until the end of the semester, which is typically the end of May.