Stay home during the coronavirus outbreak

Do your part: stay home. Together we can save lives.

What to do

Last updated Tuesday, March 31 at 1:50 pm

Stay home except for essential needs

Everyone is required to stay home except to get food, care for a relative or friend, get necessary health care, or go to an essential job.

Go out only for essentials

If you need to go out, stay at least 6 feet apart from other people. 

You do not need to stay 6 feet apart from people who live in your household. 

You may walk, bike or go for a run near your home. If you need to get into a car or on public transportation to go for a walk or run, you’re going too far.

Get more information on social distancing

Look out for one another

Older adults and those with underlying health conditions are the most vulnerable to the virus. 

Check in on people who might be vulnerable. Look out for anyone who may be isolated during this time. Call, email, or talk through the door. 

Limit face-to-face interactions with anyone particularly vulnerable to coronavirus.

This order has been extended and expanded. It remains in effect until May 3. Public health officials may extend it in the future.

Updated Health Order

San Francisco’s order for people to stay safe at home was updated and broadened on March 31, 2020 in coordination with other Bay Area counties. This was necessary to help slow the spread of the virus and save lives. Our collective effort has so far been beneficial, but more is needed to prevent hospitals from being inundated. The main changes that take effect at midnight on March 31, 2020:

  • Social distancing requirements are mandatory.
  • Use of playgrounds, outdoor gym equipment, picnic areas, and barbecue areas is prohibited. 
  • Use of shared recreational facilities like golf courses, tennis courts, basketball courts, and climbing walls is prohibited. 
  • Sports or activities that include the use of shared equipment, like frisbee, basketball, or soccer, may only be engaged in by members of the same household. 
  • Businesses that supply products needed for people to work from home are no longer essential businesses under the Order and must cease storefront sales to the public. Minimum basic operations and delivery directly to residences or businesses may continue. 
  • Essential businesses like grocery stores, banks, and pharmacies can remain open but must stop running the parts of their operations that are not essential. Employees who can work from home must do so.
  • Essential businesses must put in place formal rules, a social distancing protocol, to ensure proper sanitation and to ensure that people stay a safe distance away from each other.  
  • Most construction must stop. There are exceptions for projects to help keep people safe and housed. Those include health care projects directly related to addressing the pandemic, construction to house the homeless, affordable housing, and multi-unit or mixed-use developments containing at least 10% income-restricted units. Social distancing requirements apply. Information on construction projects during the coronavirus outbreak will be updated as it is available.  

Read the full health order

We issued a new Health Order on March 31. We are updating all of our guidance across now. Some pages may not be updated yet. 

Vulnerable populations

Vulnerable populations must stay home. People who are over 60 or have a chronic health condition are the most vulnerable to this virus. 

Get more information on how to care for older and vulnerable neighbors in the coronavirus outbreak.

Find out how to stay healthy for older adults.

Going out

Leaving your home for essentials

Leave your home only to buy essential items like food and medicine. Limit your exposure to the virus. Limit the amount of time you are out of the house. Only have 1 person go out.

Get more information about going out during the coronavirus outbreak

Stay active during the coronavirus outbreak

Do not visit friends or family if there is no urgent need.

Social distancing

When you have to go out, stay 6 feet apart from other people.

Get more information for older adults

Working during the coronavirus outbreak

Unless your work is an essential function, you cannot go to work. You may have the virus and not know it. You might get it and risk infecting those you live with.

Many businesses are not permitted to operate under this Order.

Essential businesses are allowed to operate. Check if your business is essential

Find out more about working during the coronavirus outbreak

Transportation and travel

Do not travel, unless you have to, for essential activities or business.

Get more information about travel, parking, public transportation, rideshare services, rental cars, air travel during the coronavirus outbreak

You can travel in and out of the Bay Area only to perform essential activities, operate essential businesses, or to maintain essential governmental functions.

Otherwise, do not travel. Travel puts you and others in the community at risk.

What's open

Only essential businesses can be open during the coronavirus outbreak. 

Find out what businesses are essential

Find out what City services are available during the coronavirus outbreak

Order delivery whenever possible.

Health care and healthcare settings

Do not go to the emergency room of a hospital unless you are having an actual emergency.

Non-essential medical care like eye exams, teeth cleaning, and elective procedures must be cancelled or rescheduled.

If you are feeling sick, call your doctor, a nurse hotline, or an urgent care center.

Get more information on health care and healthcare settings during the coronavirus outbreak

Schools and childcare

All schools in San Francisco are closed.

SFUSD schools are closed through May 1.

Schools may provide distance learning to their students. 

Find out more about schools and childcare during the coronavirus outbreak.

Find out about free meals from the San Francisco Unified School District.  

Operating a business

Check if your business is essential

Essential businesses can remain open if they abide by social distancing requirements. Non-essential businesses can only perform basic operations.

If you are an essential business, you must follow social distancing at your business

Construction during the coronavirus outbreak

Find out which construction projects are essential and will continue, and get information to keep construction job sites safe.



You can walk your dog. You can go to the vet or pet hospital if your pet is sick.

Remember to distance yourself at least 6 feet from other pets and owners. 


This is a legally enforceable order issued under California law. It is a crime to violate this Order, and you may be punished by a fine or imprisonment for doing so.

Get help

Last updated March 31, 2020