Authorities fear that regular wards in hospitals will soon also run out.
In densely populated southern California and the agricultural San Joaquin valley in this state, where a total of about 30 million people live, there are no free beds in intensive care units, Governor Gavin Newsom said.
California health and human services secretary Mark Gali said many hospitals in the state might soon run out of wards for patients who need hospitalization but do not require intensive care.
Speaking at a press conference, Gali linked the current spike in COVID-19 cases to people meeting on thanksgiving. According to him, a similar surge is expected after Christmas and New Year.
Newsom urged Californians to comply with stay-at-home orders that limit people’s activity across much of the state.
“We are not victims of fate,” he said.