Sonoma County Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase late Monday issued an appeal to residents to stay home as much as possible for the next 30 days and limit interactions with those outside of their immediate household. She also issued a Health Order canceling large gatherings to limit the further spread of the novel coronavirus in the county. Large gatherings of more than 50 people indoors, or more than 100 people outdoors (where social distancing is not feasible), are prohibited for the duration of the order. The order will take effect at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 12 and is scheduled to remain in effect until Feb. 11. COVID hospitalizations increased from 28 on Jan. 3, 2022, to 76 on Jan. 9, 2022. During the winter surge a year ago, COVID hospitalizations in Sonoma County reached an average of 104 per day. Without additional mitigation efforts such as these steps, the state is projecting that the county could experience more than 380 daily hospitalizations, which could outstrip the resources of local hospitals, many of which are already taxed due to staffing shortages.