California is facing a double whammy health crisis, the Covid 19 pandemic and hazardous air quality from wildfires. As doctors across the country, we are concerned about how to vote safely in these unprecedented conditions. The crowded, in person voting in the Wisconsin primaries caused a spike in Covid 19 cases.  Voting by mail from the safety of your own home is clearly the healthiest way to vote. 

You can register to vote until Mon. Oct 19, 2020.

All active Californian voters will receive their ballots in the mail after they are mailed out on Oct 5, 2020. You should expect to receive your ballot 7-10 days later. To receive your ballot, make sure you are registered or to change your address go to Make sure to SEAL then SIGN the BALLOT ENVELOPE before you return. 

If you would still like to vote in person, consider going for Early Voting.

The Early Voting in California begins Mon. Oct. 5, 2020 to Mon. Nov. 2, 2020. Early voting and vote-by-mail ballot drop off locations may be found on the Secretary of State’s Early Voting website. Take your unused vote-by-mail ballot with you to surrender at the polls for a regular ballot-  otherwise your vote will be provisional. 

In California, you can also do Same-day registration at your local polling place.

You will need your driver license or California identification card number or passport or student identification card showing your name and picture. You will also need the last 4 digits of your social security card and your date of birth. If you are planning to vote in person, remember to Stay Safe by wearing a mask, keep socially distanced, and use hand sanitizer on entry and exit.   

As physicians we want you to feel safe voting this Election 2020. Our Rx for healthy voting is this: Vote from home, request or ensure you get your ballot to Vote by Mail. If you plan to vote in person, vote early and practice safe voting by wearing a mask and practice social distancing.

by Margie Chen MD, Climate Health Now and 350 Bay Area Contributing Writer