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Confirmed COVID-19 Cases In San Diego County Approaches 2,500, Deaths Near 100

The number of COVID-19 cases on April 22, 2020, in San Diego in this chart by...

Credit: County of San Diego

Above: The number of COVID-19 cases on April 22, 2020, in San Diego in this chart by San Diego County public health department.

UPDATE: 7 a.m., April, 23, 2020

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in San Diego County currently sits just shy of 2,500, with nearly 100 deaths reported thus far.

County health officials reported 57 new COVID-19 cases and nine additional deaths on Wednesday, raising the county's totals to 2,491 confirmed cases and 96 deaths.

The nine deceased — three women and six men, ranging in age from 38 to 99 — all had underlying health issues, said Dr. Eric McDonald, the county's director of epidemiology and immunizations.

The county has reported 24 deaths from the respiratory illness over a two-day period ending Wednesday, the deadliest two-day stretch since the coronavirus outbreak began.

McDonald said the seeming uptick in deaths may not indicate much about the direction the pandemic is taking locally. Calling deaths a "lagging indicator," he noted that physicians have eight days to file death certificates and the nine deaths reported Wednesday occurred over a four-day period from last Friday through Monday.

Reported by John Carroll , Video by Amal Younis

Deaths are not being used as an indicator to make decisions such as when to loosen or lift public health orders, McDonald said.

The number of hospitalizations from COVID-19 rose to 611 on Wednesday, and the number of patients being treated in intensive care units climbed to 206, representing increases of 19 and seven, respectively, from Tuesday.

Coronavirus: Quick facts

  • What is coronavirus?
    The novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, is a virus that can infect animals and humans. It causes a range of respiratory illness, fever, cough and in more severe cases can cause pneumonia and even death.
  • What are the symptoms?
    The following symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure: fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
  • Get all coverage →

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The county and regional hospitals have now completed more than 36,000 tests, with a positive test rate of around 6.8%. The county estimates that 1,434 people have recovered from COVID-19, but it does not have an exact, verifiable recovery number.

Of all positive-testing coronavirus cases, 24.5% of the patients have been hospitalized and 8.3% sent to intensive care. Nearly 4% of COVID-19 patients have died, a rate higher than most jurisdictions are reporting.

"This is one of several indicators that there are undiagnosed cases in our community," McDonald said.

Of the 96 people who have died of the disease, 51 have been white, 28 Latino and nine Asian. The race of four of the deceased is unknown.

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