On July 13, California Gov. Gavin Newsom tweeted that the state is closing indoor operations statewide for restaurants, wineries, tasting rooms, movie theaters, family entertainment centers, zoos, museums, bars, and cardrooms.
Additionally, bars, breweries, and pubs must close all operations—indoor and outdoor—statewide.
FILE PHOTO BY JAYSON MELLOM
COVID UPDATE SLO County was placed on the state's watch list for COVID-19, and Public Health Director Penny Borenstein said demand for testing is so high that the county is once again prioritizing at-risk individuals.
Newsom announced the closures due to what he called “alarming rates” of COVID-19 cases.
SLO County’s also seeing a significant uptick in the number of positive coronavirus cases. During the July 8 SLO County Public Health Department briefing, county Public Health Officer Dr. Penny Borenstein said she anticipated that the county would go on the state’s monitoring list
, which it did on July 13. Counties placed on the list fail to meet the state’s COVID-19 metrics, which include disease transmission rates, hospitalizations, and hospital capacity.
“We do know from our metrics that we are following on a daily basis that we fail to meet one of those criteria. That criteria is to have no more than 100 cases per 100,000 population in a 14-day period,” Borenstein said on July 8. “What that is for our county, is over the last two weeks, if we exceed 283 total cases, that puts us in the county monitoring status.”
According to California Department of Public Health data
, SLO County has a case rate of 114.4 cases per 100,000 residents over a 14-day period.
Counties that remain on the list for three consecutive days are required to shut down fitness centers, worship services, protests, offices for non-essential sectors, personal care services, hair salons and barbershops, and malls.
SLO County had 1,006 confirmed cases as of July 13, 688 were recovered, and 12 were hospitalized with six in the ICU. SLO County health officials reported a fifth death due to COVID-19 on July 11, the third coronavirus-related death in a week. According to health officials, the individual was in their 70s and had multiple underlying health conditions.
In a press release, Borenstein said that losing another member of the community is heartbreaking.
“We feel for the friends and family of the patient. This is an unfortunate reminder that COVID-19 is spreading in our community,” Borenstein said.
On average, the age groups with the largest number of positive test results are from 18 to 29 and 30 to 49 years old. According to the county, about 40 percent of the local spread in COVID-19 cases was through person-to-person contact, 32 percent through community transmission, 17 percent are still under investigation, and 11 percent were due to travel outside of the county.
Borenstein said because the demand for COVID-19 testing is so high, the county is reverting back to prioritizing high-risk individuals for testing
—those with confirmed exposure, who are essential or health care workers, and/or who show symptoms. ∆