President Donald Trump at the White House on Monday urged the nation to follow social distancing for at least 15 days as part of the country's effort to halt the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
The president estimated that the coronavirus "washes through" the population by late July or early August.
He later clarified this to mean that the administration will reassess where the virus is in its evolution every 15 days, and not that it expects the current restrictions to be in place until the late summer.
He said that every day he asks his cabinet when Americans can return to normal daily life.
Trump echoed recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that everyone should avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people.
The president also said that parents should home-school their kids when possible and that young people should avoid bars, restaurants and public food courts.
He also reminded younger people that transmitting the disease is possible even if symptoms are not present.
During the question-and-answer session with reporters, Trump said that at the moment his administration had no plans for a national quarantine but that the White House is still monitoring the situation.
The speech came hours after the president held a conference call with governors of the states and territories as well as the mayor of Washington.
Trump told the group to try to go through their existing supply chains to get medical supplies, reports say.
Trump said that the administration does plan any domestic travel restrictions, though the idea has been discussed.
The news conference was set to start half an hour before the stock-market close. Stocks plummeted into the closing bell. The Dow fell nearly 13%, or nearly 3,000 points, while the Nasdaq and S&P 500 dropped 12.3% and 12%, respectively.