California first state to approach COVID-19 as endemic, not pandemic: "We will work to live with this virus"
California became the first state to formally shift to an "endemic" approach to the coronavirus with Gov. Gavin Newsom's announcement Thursday of a plan that emphasizes prevention and quick reaction to outbreaks over mandated masking and business shutdowns.
The milestone, nearly two years in the making, envisions a return to a more normal existence with the help of a variety of initiatives and billions in new spending to more quickly spot surges or variants, add health care workers, stockpile tests and push back against false claims and other misinformation.
"We are moving past the crisis phase into a phase where we will work to live with this virus," he said during a news conference from a state warehouse brimming with pandemic supplies in Fontana, east of Los Angeles.