Florida governor issues statewide stay-at-home order

Coronavirus

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during a news conference at a drive-through coronavirus testing site in front of Hard Rock Stadium, Monday, March 30, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. Gov. Ron DeSantis doesn’t want the people on the Holland America’s Zandaam where four people died and others are sick to be treated in Florida, saying the state doesn’t have the capacity to treat outsiders as the coronavirus outbreak spreads. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a statewide stay-at-home order on Wednesday as federal and local pressure mounted for him to abandon the county-by-county approach he had implemented.

DeSantis told reporters that he is issuing the order after consulting with President Donald Trump and White House advisers, who have said that Americans need to stay home throughout April.

DeSantis’ move came hours after the U.S. surgeon general, Dr. Jerome Adams, said on NBC’s “Today” show that he would tell DeSantis that the federal guidelines for social distancing should be viewed as “a national stay-at-home order.”

The state’s confirmed cases are approaching 7,000, deaths have reached 86 and almost 900 are hospitalized with a university model cited this week at the White House showing an exponential growth in the coming weeks.

More than 30 other states had already issued such orders, including other large states such as California, New York and Illinois. Those all acted more than a week ago.

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