A lab technician labels COVID-19 test swabs before processing at the Sonoma County Department of Public Health in Santa Rosa. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

San Diego County’s Health and Human Services Agency continues to see higher numbers of new COVID-19 cases, with 745 reported Monday.

After a peak of 1,264 new cases released Friday — the highest number since February – officials reported 784 new infections Saturday and 515 Sunday.

Overwhelmingly, locally and across the country, the new cases are being found among those who have not been vaccinated. Officials said 89% of a recent group of more than 6,500 San Diegans who tested positive were not fully vaccinated.

The new cases bring the total number of local cases since the pandemic began to 292,688. The death toll remains at 3,793.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Gov Gavin Newsom announced that all state employees and workers at hospitals and healthcare facilities across California must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

The policy allows though for those who are unable to show proof, or refuse to do so, to be tested at least once a week for the virus.

Statewide, public health officials reported 21,940 new cases Monday, to bring the cumulative total to 3.8 million. With 65 more deaths, California’s death toll stands at 63,806.

U.S. officials are considering whether to revise mask guidance for the vaccinated. Los Angeles County, the most populous in the U.S., is again requiring masks indoors, even among the vaccinated.

San Diego County continues to follow California Department of Public Health guidelines which require indoor masking of unvaccinated individuals and masking of everyone in certain settings.

State guidelines permit businesses to require masks for anyone indoors whether people are vaccinated or not. County health officials say San Diegans who feel uncomfortable around others should wear a mask if they want to.

“The biggest risk to the world at the moment is simply Delta,” said microbiologist Sharon Peacock, who runs Britain’s efforts to sequence the genomes of coronavirus variants. She calls it the “fittest and fastest variant yet.”

Reuters contributed to this report.

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