Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Racial Justice | Election 2020

Tracking Covid 19

Live Blog: San Diego County Reports 171 Cases Of COVID-19, Six Deaths, Seven Outbreaks

This is a breaking news blog for all of the latest updates about the coronavirus pandemic. Get our complete coronavirus coverage here →

San Diego County Reports 171 Cases Of COVID-19, Six Deaths, Seven Outbreaks

– 4:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020

San Diego County public health officials reported 171 new COVID-19 infections and six additional deaths related to the illness, raising the region's totals to 45,596 cases and 773 deaths.

Three men and three women died between Sept. 17 and Sept. 22, and their ages ranged from mid-50s to early 90s.

Of the 13,609 tests reported Thursday, just 1% returned positive, lowering the 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases to 3.4%. The county has averaged 8,828 daily tests over the past week.

Of the total COVID-19 cases in the county, 3,460, or 7.6%, have been hospitalized with another 814, or 1.8%, spending some time in an intensive care unit.

San Diego State University reported 20 of Thursdays new cases were connected to the university, which now has 933 total confirmed or probable cases -- including four employees and 13 visitors to the campus.

A total of seven new community outbreaks were reported Thursday, raising the number in the past week to 15. Two of the community outbreaks were reported in restaurant settings, two in restaurant/bar settings, two in business settings and one in a faith-based setting.

According to county data, 61.5% of those hospitalized with the illness have been Hispanic or Latino, even as that ethnic group represents around 35% of the county's population. By comparison, 23.3% of those hospitalized have been white, 7.2% Asian and 5.8% Black. — City News Service

Mar Vista High COVID-19 Testing Site Reopens Sept. 24

– 5:51 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020

San Diego County’s COVID-19 testing site at Mar Vista High School in Imperial Beach is reopening Sept. 24. The site temporarily closed in order to provide resources to San Diego State University.

The drive-up testing site will be open, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and providing 500 free tests a day. No appointment necessary.

Including Mar Vista, there are six county COVID-19 testing sites that don’t require appointments. The other five are: Viasat Engineering Pavilion at California State University San Marcos, Electronics Recycling Center at University of San Diego, Tubman-Chavez Community Center and San Ysidro Port of Entry. – Lara McCaffrey, KPBS web producer

San Diego County Reports 278 Cases Of COVID-19, Two More Deaths

– 3:45 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020

San Diego County public health officials reported 278 new COVID-19 infections and two additional deaths related to the illness Wednesday, raising the region's totals to 45,425 cases and 767 deaths.

The county's total cases crossed the 45,000 mark Tuesday, and on Wednesday another milestone was reached when the total number of tests reported topped one million.

Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county's public health officer, thanked agencies and businesses contributing to testing numbers and said the county would maintain its priority testing for those showing symptoms of the illness.

"Our goal is to test the right people that need to be tested in San Diego County," she said.

With an average of 8,241 daily tests over the past week, the number of tests returning positive is 3.6% of the total over the last 14 days. The county narrowly avoiding being dropped to the dreaded "purple" tier of COVID- 19 reopening Tuesday, with 6.9 new daily cases per 100,000 population, just 0.1 away from the state's most restrictive tier.

San Diego County will remain in the red tier at least until next Tuesday, according to state officials.

Of the total COVID-19 cases in the county, 3,450 have been hospitalized with another 813 spending some time in an intensive care unit.San Diego County public health officials reported 278 new COVID-19 infections and two additional deaths related to the illness Wednesday, raising the region's totals to 45,425 cases and 767 deaths.

The county's total cases crossed the 45,000 mark Tuesday, and on Wednesday another milestone was reached when the total number of tests reported topped one million.

Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county's public health officer, thanked agencies and businesses contributing to testing numbers and said the county would maintain its priority testing for those showing symptoms of the illness.

"Our goal is to test the right people that need to be tested in San Diego County," she said.

With an average of 8,241 daily tests over the past week, the number of tests returning positive is 3.6% of the total over the last 14 days. The county narrowly avoiding being dropped to the dreaded "purple" tier of COVID- 19 reopening Tuesday, with 6.9 new daily cases per 100,000 population, just 0.1 away from the state's most restrictive tier.

San Diego County will remain in the red tier at least until next Tuesday, according to state officials.

Of the total COVID-19 cases in the county, 3,450 have been hospitalized with another 813 spending some time in an intensive care unit. — City News Service

San Diego County Remains In Red Tier

– 12 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020

Despite increasing coronavirus numbers, San Diego County will not yet regress into the most restrictive, or "purple" tier, of the state's economic-reopening guidelines, according to data released Tuesday.

State health secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly noted, however, that the county is hovering on the brink of being moved out of the less-restrictive "red" category.

There were concerns the county could slip into the "purple tier," the state's most restrictive because of the outbreak at San Diego State University.

SDSU has reported 880 confirmed or probable cases, including two reports of faculty or staff who have tested positive.

Photo credit: State of California

The new color-coded coronavirus county-risk level announced by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Aug. 28, 2020.

The county Board of Supervisors met Monday and last Thursday nights to discuss its options, including legal action, after Gov. Gavin Newsom rejected a county effort Wednesday to discount the more than 800 positive tests recorded by SDSU since the semester began.

Had the county slipped back to the purple tier of the state's coronavirus reopening roadmap, it would likely have to shutter indoor operations for restaurants, movie theaters, houses of worship and gyms, limit retail businesses to just 25% capacity and have major impacts on indoor business for most other industries until the county can improve its numbers. — City News Service

SD County Reports 348 New COVID-19 Cases As it Waits For State Data

– 6 p.m., Monday, Sept. 21, 2020

San Diego County public health officials reported 348 new COVID-19 infections and no new deaths Monday, raising the region's total cases to 44,925 with the death toll remaining at 760.

The county awaits data from the state Tuesday which could potentially place San Diego in the "purple tier," the state's most restrictive.

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors met in closed session Monday to discuss potential action should the state data indicate the county will be placed in the purple tier, including legal action.

Supervisor Jim Desmond said Monday's meeting yielded no action from the board.

"We will continue to work with the state to make sure the metrics accurately reflect the underlying dynamics of the pandemic," he said.

If the state data announced Tuesday shows the county has an average daily new case rate of seven per 100,000 population or higher, it will likely be moved into the purple tier.

Of the 6,374 tests reported on Monday, 5% returned positive, bringing the 14-day rolling average of positive tests to 3.7%.

The seven-day daily average of tests is 8,440.

Of the total positive cases reported as of Sunday, 3,418 — or 7.6% — required hospitalization and 801 — or 1.8% — had to be admitted to an intensive care unit.

One new community outbreak in a restaurant was confirmed Monday. From Sept. 14-20, 22 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. — City News Service

Faster, Streamlined Access to Unemployment Benefits Is Two Weeks Away, Newsom Says

– 3:35 p.m., Monday, Sept. 21, 2020

Gov. Gavin Newsom reassured Californians that a faster, streamlined process to file for unemployment is on the way, acknowledging that the Employment Development Department's (EDD) out-of-date technology and infrastructure have contributed to a massive backlog of claims.

The EDD released a report on Saturday announcing it would dedicate the next two weeks to an agency-wide reset to make it easier for eligible Californians to apply for and receive unemployment benefits. The department will pause accepting new claims until Oct. 5.

Newsom said that significant delays in processing claims are not a problem unique to California, and outdated technology is in no small part responsible for the trouble. “As a nation, we have a huge IT problem,” he said.

The agency plans to launch a system called ID.me to automatically verify the identity of a claimant. The hope is the changes will make it easier for newcomers to file claims, mitigate fraud and help the department work through a backlog of some 1.6 million cases.

Meanwhile, Newsom said California’s COVID-19 numbers continue to drop. The current seven-day average positivity rate has fallen to 2.8% even as the state continues to expand testing. The number of tests performed dropped significantly during the heat waves, smoke and fires earlier in September, but they have since rebounded.

Newsom expects to see the number of tests increase as the state works towards building out a testing lab and reaching the goal of delivering test results in 24 to 48 hours. California has also seen a fourteen-day average 23% drop in hospitalizations and a 25% drop in ICU admissions. — Nina Sparling /KQED

COVID-19 Outbreak At SDSU Pushes San Diego To Brink Of Another Shutdown

– 3:30 p.m., Monday, Sept. 21, 2020

A coronavirus outbreak at a college has pushed one of California's largest counties to the brink of more business shutdowns.

It's a dizzying and discouraging turn of events for San Diego County and its 3.3 million residents.

Less than a month ago, San Diego was the only county in Southern California to advance to a second tier in the state’s four-tiered reopening template for counties. But more than 800 cases at San Diego State University changed the outlook.

On Tuesday, the state will update the state's reopening situation and it's expected San Diego will fall back to the most restrictive tier. Among other things, that means restaurants couldn't offer indoor dining. — Associated Press

Coronavirus Blog Archive →

FEATURED PODCAST

San Diego News Matters podcast branding

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.