San Diego County reports 162 new COVID-19 cases, 9 more virus deaths
San Diego County reported 162 new COVID-19 infections and nine additional virus-related deaths in its latest data, while hospitalizations continued to decline locally and nationally, where they fell to the lowest point since the pandemic started.
According to a Twitter post by Dr. Eric Topol, director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, hospitalizations related to the coronavirus have declined across the country to their lowest point since late March 2020.
"A reason to celebrate, even if it's brief," he wrote.
In addition to the 162 new cases reported Wednesday, the county also reported that there was a backlog of 457 cases from last December.
Locally, the number of COVID-positive patients in San Diego County hospitals decreased by 10 to 140, according to the latest state data. The number of those patients in intensive care declined by two to 26. Available ICU beds increased by 12 to 281.
Wednesday's data increased the county's cumulative totals to 750,454 cases and 5,178 deaths.
The percentage of positive tests reported in the past week decreased to 2.8%, according to the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency. The average number of daily tests reported in the past week was 11,452.
The county Health and Human Services Agency announced Wednesday that close to 1 million San Diegans qualify now for the COVID-19 vaccine booster, but still not received their dose. Out of 2,182,257 San Diegans who are eligible, 969,219 remain unboosted. County health officials are reminding residents "that having all the recommended vaccines can prevent getting and spreading COVID-19."
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Western States workgroup have approved an additional COVID-19 vaccine booster — Pfizer or Moderna — for people 50 and older. Eligible San Diegans in this age group can now get the second booster locally.
Dr. Wilma Wooten, county public health officer, said older adults "are more likely to have complications from COVID-19 and be hospitalized, especially if they have underlying health conditions. San Diegans should definitely consider getting a fourth dose if they qualify."
Vaccinations are available at clinics, county locations medical providers and pharmacies.
Information on appointments or site locations are available by calling 833-422-4255 or visiting MyTurn.ca.gov or the county's website.