By José A. Álvarez, County of San Diego Communications Office
After posting a case rate of more than 7 cases per 100,000 residents for two consecutive weeks, the state is placing the County in the Purple Tier, the most restrictive level of its system that limits activities based on risk of spreading COVID-19.
The County’s case rate increased to 7.4, then 8.9 over the past two weeks; therefore, the region must stop indoor operations at restaurants, gyms, churches and movie theaters starting Sat., Nov. 14. Retailers will need to keep customers at 25% of capacity.
“The key to decreasing cases is wearing a mask, maintaining social distance, avoiding gatherings and following other public health recommendations,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. “We understand that people have COVID fatigue, but we have to do what we know works.”
The County will remain in the Purple Tier for at least three weeks. It won’t be able to advance to the Red Tier unless it posts a case rate below 7 cases per 100,000 residents two weeks in a row.
The state’s health equity metric also increased from 5.3 to 6.5 and remains in the Red Tier or Tier 2. This metric looks at the testing positivity for areas with the lowest healthy conditions and does not move counties to more restrictive tiers but is required to advance.
As the County has ramped up testing in the region, the testing positivity percentage decreased from 3.2% to 2.6%, placing it in Tier 3 or the Orange Tier, where it has been since the state adopted this level system.
“If we don’t continue to take proven, preventive precautions, we won’t be able to get out of the Purple Tier and loosen restrictions,” Wooten said.
The California Department of Public Health assesses counties on a weekly basis. The next report is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 17.
Community Setting Outbreaks:
- Five new community outbreaks were confirmed on Nov. 9: one in a restaurant/bar setting, one in a business setting, one in a retail setting, one in a grocery setting and one in a TK-12 school setting.
- In the past seven days (Nov. 3 through Nov. 9), 39 community outbreaks were confirmed.
- The number of community outbreaks remains above the trigger of seven or more in seven days.
- A community setting outbreak is defined as three or more COVID-19 cases in a setting and in people of different households over the past 14 days.
- 9,325 tests were reported to the County on Nov. 9, and the percentage of new laboratory-confirmed cases was 5%.
- The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is 3.5%. Target is less than 8.0%.
- The 7-day, daily average of tests is 12,541.
- People with and without symptoms who are at higher risk for COVID-19 should be tested. Health care and essential workers should also get a test, as well as people who had close contact to a positive case or live in communities that are being highly impacted.
- 483 new cases were confirmed among San Diego County residents on Nov. 9. The region’s total is now 61,053.
- 4,084 or 6.7% of all cases have required hospitalization.
- 944 or 1.5% of all cases and 23.1% of hospitalized cases had to be admitted to an intensive care unit.
- Seven new deaths were reported in the County on Nov. 9. The region’s total is now 915.
- Five men and two women died between Oct. 19 and Nov. 8. Their ages ranged from early 30s to early 80s.
- All had underlying medical conditions.
The more detailed data summaries found on the County’s coronavirus-sd.com website.