SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Monday that the COVID-19 state of emergency will end on Feb. 28, 2023, according to a press release from his office.

The announcement stated that letting the state of emergency continue until the end of February gave the health care system flexibility to handle any potential surge that may occur after the holidays in January and February – as well as providing state and local partners the time needed to prepare for the phaseout.

The press release defended Newsom’s record compared to states that had more lax COVID-19 policies, stating that if California had Texas’ death rate “27,000 more people would have died here. If California had Florida’s rate, that figure jumps to approximately 56,000 more deaths.”

“Throughout the pandemic, we’ve been guided by the science and data – moving quickly and strategically to save lives. The State of Emergency was an effective and necessary tool that we utilized to protect our state, and we wouldn’t have gotten to this point without it. With the operational preparedness that we’ve built up and the measures that we’ll continue to employ moving forward, California is ready to phase out this tool.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom

Some 81 million doses of vaccine were administered in California, as well as 186 million tests.