COVID-19 2021: Where is Southeastern San Diego Now?

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From the San Diego County Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Weekly Surveillance Report.

By Cori Zaragoza, Contributing Writer

The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t finished with San Diego yet

What has changed from June 2020 to June 2021 in terms of COVID-19? The data doesn’t lie—while vaccination rates in San Diego are up, the threat of COVID-19 still lingers. A report by the County of San Diego Health & Human Services Agency (HHSA) reported 1,264 new cases on July 23, 2021, the highest number since February 5, 2021.

In June 2020, Southeastern San Diego experienced 1,955 new cases of COVID-19. Comparatively, in June 2021, a whopping 36,840 new cases were reported in Southeastern San Diego. While cases are expected to go down with the uptick of vaccinations, residents must still take precautions to stay safe from COVID-19.

Despite California re-opening, the pandemic is still a threat. San Diego local, Rynne Griggs, applauded the ongoing efforts of the County while remaining cautious: “We’re at a much better place than we were at a year ago when we were still in lockdown. But I have noticed a mask resurgence, even in the last few days. At work, a bunch more people are wearing masks again. And it’s kind of made me think about, like, maybe I should be wearing my mask again too.”

Irma, a 73 year old local, echoed the sentiment of hope with a tinge of worry: “I’m so happy to be able to see my family again, but I’m scared we will go back into lockdown if not enough people get the [COVID-19] shot.”

Others, like San Diego native Ramon, believe our way out of the pandemic is through vaccines. “I still think that people are underestimating [COVID-19] to a point, I think we still should be a lot more guarded than people want to feel. They feel like it’s all over but I don’t think it’s over. We have done a lot but there are still a lot of people who aren’t vaccinated. And Winter is coming so you figure, we need to get everyone vaccinated now before we reach a bigger problem,” he said.

The Unvaccinated Account for Almost All COVID-19 Cases and Hospitalizations

Only about 50% of adults in the U.S. are currently fully vaccinated. San Diego is a different story. Our county had a goal of vaccinating 75% of residents 12 and older, or 2,101,936 people, with at least one dose by June 2021. San Diego has exceeded that and is now at 106.9% of the goal population having received at least one vaccine, while 92.3% of the goal population are fully vaccinated.

According to a July 7, 2021 report by the County of San Diego HHSA, a total of 98% of hospitalizations in the last 30 days are in individuals who are not vaccinated or have not completed the full series of the two-dose vaccine.

Reported Cases:
According to a July 21 report from The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency, between July 14 and July 21, 2021, 3,465 COVID-19 cases were reported in San Diego County, an 82% increase of reported infections from the week before. The region’s total is now 288,681. San Diego County’s case rate is 7.6 cases per 100,000 residents as of July 20, 2021.

Community Setting Outbreaks:
22 new community outbreaks were confirmed between July 14 and July 20, 2021: 10 in restaurant/bar settings, four in business settings, two in day camp settings, one in a campground setting, one in a restaurant setting, one in a construction setting, one in a government setting, one in a retail setting and one in a faith-based setting.

Am I fully vaccinated?
In general, people are considered fully vaccinated:
2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines
2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine
If you don’t meet these requirements, regardless of your age, you are NOT fully vaccinated.

How can I get vaccinated?
The most effective way to avoid catching the coronavirus is by getting the vaccine. COVID-19 vaccines are offered at no-cost through health providers and public clinics/walk-ups. Vaccines are free and you will never be charged. To find a vaccine provider near you please visit vaccines.gov

What if I still become diagnosed with COVID-19?
Family Health Centers (FHC) of San Diego offer free testing and outpatient treatments for those diagnosed with COVID-19 to help patients manage symptoms at home. FHC offers free monoclonal antibody therapy, which both reduces the symptoms of COVID-19 and the chance of being hospitalized due to the illness. This treatment is only effective within the first 10 days of illness, so it is important to get tested at the first sign of exposure or symptoms.

For more information and appointments visit crushcovid.com or call 619-906-5420

SD V&V coverage of local news in San Diego County is supported by the Ethnic Media Sustainability Initiative, a program created by California Black Media and Ethnic Media Services to support minority-owned-and-operated community newspapers across California.

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