San Diego County Reports More Than 2,000 New COVID-19 Cases As Additional Vaccines Arrive
San Diego County public health officials reported 28 new deaths and 2,381 new COVID-19 infections Tuesday, the fewest cases reported since Dec. 14.
Still, Tuesday's reported cases marked the 22nd consecutive day with more than 1,000 cases. It was also the 15th day overall with more than 2,000 new cases. With 3,252 COVID-19 infections reported Monday, 3,611 Friday, 3,493 Saturday, 2,807 Wednesday and 2,604 cases Thursday. The five highest daily case counts have all occurred in the past week.
The county's cumulative cases increased to 132,098.
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The county's death toll is now 1,311: 16 men and 12 women died between Dec. 9 and Dec. 21, and their ages ranged from the early 50s to mid-90s. All but one had underlying medical conditions.
Another 35 people were hospitalized as of Tuesday, with six additional people sent to an intensive care unit.
With intensive-care unit capacity still officially considered to be zero across the 11-county Southern California region, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday the regional stay-at-home order imposed by the state for the entirety of Southern California will almost assuredly be extended beyond next week's expiration date.
Current stay-at-home orders took effect at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 6, and were originally set to end on Dec. 28. Newsom did not give an indication of exactly when a decision on extending the orders will be made, or much long the orders will remain in place.
UC San Diego Health received its first shipment of 5,500 doses of the Moderna vaccine on Tuesday. This shipment follows receipt on Dec. 15 of the first 2,925 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
"With two vaccines in hand, we can redouble our efforts to provide protection from infection by the SARS-CoV-2 virus," said Patty Maysent, CEO of UCSD Health. "These are still early days, however. We must continue to mask, distance, wash our hands and follow all public health measures until everyone has been offered the chance to vaccinate and we have gained significant immunity. That day will come. This day is a big step toward it."
The new batches of vaccines will join the 28,275 Pfizer doses that arrived last week in the region, with first priority going to civilian acute health care workers. San Diego County is home to 82,623 people working in hospital or psychiatric facilities, and 39,755 of them are considered "highest risk" and will first receive vaccines.
An undisclosed number of vaccines for military personnel arrived at Naval Medical Center San Diego and Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton last week as well.
Of 24,031 tests reported Tuesday in San Diego County, 10% returned positive, raising the 14-day average to 9.7%.
Five new community outbreaks were confirmed Tuesday: two in business settings, one in a daycare/preschool/childcare setting, one in a TK-12 school setting and one in government setting. In the past seven days, 39 community outbreaks were confirmed.
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.