Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam issues 'stay-at-home' executive order

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has issued a stay-at-home executive order for the state as the battle to stop the spread of the coronavirus continues. 

The executive order takes effect immediately and will remain in place until June 10, 2020, unless amended or rescinded by a further executive order, according to Gov. Northam. 

What the stay-at-home order means for Maryland, Virginia residents

The Commonwealth currently has more than 1,020 cases, with 25 deaths realted to the coronavirus. 

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According to the health department, as of March 27, seven of the state's patients are under the age of 9, while 12 patients are between the ages of 10 and 19.

Virginia residents may leave their home to seek medical attention, work, care for family or household members, obtain groceries and prescriptions, and engage in outdoor activity. 

All outings must follow "strict social distancing requirements," Northam said. 

Any gaterings with more than 10 people are also prohibitted. 

“We are in a public health crisis, and we need everyone to take this seriously and act responsibly,” said Governor Northam. “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. I’m deeply grateful to everyone for their cooperation during this unprecedented and difficult time.” 


CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES: Everything you need to know about COVID-19 in the District, Maryland and Virginia


Protecting yourself and others from the coronavirus:

In order to protect yourself from a possible infection, the CDC recommends: 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.


Symptoms for the COVID-19 virus could appear in as few as two days, or as long as 14 days after exposure, according the CDC.

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath and a fever, to severe and even fatal respiratory distress.

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

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