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UPDATE: Governor issues 'stay at home' order across Virginia

UPDATE: Governor issues 'stay at home' order across Virginia

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Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday issued a statewide "stay at home" order in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

"Individuals may leave their residence for allowable travel, including to seek medical attention, work, care for family or household members, obtain goods and services like groceries, prescriptions, and others as outlined in Executive Order Fifty-Three, and engage in outdoor activity with strict social distancing requirements," the governor's office said in a news release, referring to a previous executive order issued March 23.

The new order is effective immediately and will remain in place until June 10, unless the governor amends or rescinds it earlier.

Virginia higher-education institutions must stop in-person instruction. Private campgrounds must close for short-term stays, and state beaches will be closed except for fishing and exercise, the governor's office said.

"I want to be clear: Do not go out unless you need to go out," Northam said in an afternoon news conference announcing the new order.

The full text of the governor's new executive order, No. 55, can be read here.

The number of confirmed cases in Virginia of COVID-19 — the disease caused by the novel coronavirus — is up to 1,020, according to the Virginia Department of Health.

The newest figures, released Monday, also show 12,038 people have been tested, 136 have been hospitalized and 25 have died.

Locally, Lynchburg has four cases, Amherst County has three and Bedford County two, according to the state health department.

The health department noted that due to a lag in reporting, illnesses that began on or after March 22 might not yet be reported.

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