A Lighthouse Ice Cream & Yogurt in Ocean Beach posted a message about its temporary closing to its customers. Photo by Chris Stone

San Diego County health officials said Sunday four restaurant workers and one grocery store employee have tested positive for coronavirus as the number of cases gew by 31 to 519.

Supervisor Nathan Fletcher announced during Sunday’s briefing on the COVID-19 pandemic that no patients have died in the last 24 hours, leaving the death toll in San Diego County at seven.

“Fortunately, there is no additional loss of life to report today,” Fletcher said.

The county Health and Human Services Agency reported the latest case totals shortly after 5 p.m. The increase of 31 compares with 71 on Saturday and 76 on Friday. However, officials cautioned that test results for private laboratories are frequently delayed on weekends.

The grocery store employee who tested positive is from an Albertsons store in Escondido, Fletcher said, adding that the store did the right thing by closing, alerting county environmental health officials, following sanitation protocols, then re-opening to customers.

“If you have a sick worker, they must stay home,” Fletcher said, urging employers to call 858-505-6814 to report any sick workers.

Dr. Eric McDonald, the county’s medical director of epidemiology, said co-workers of the Albertsons employee who display any symptoms of the coronavirus infection will be sent home, but there are no tests pending in this case.

Health officials also stressed that there is no evidence of COVID-19 association with food according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Fletcher noted that the county is increasing inspections of the many food facilities in the region.

Meanwhile, another cruise ship, the Celebrity Eclipse, is scheduled to dock in San Diego on Monday, but its passengers show no signs of illness.

McDonald said 17 cruise passengers are from San Diego County and will go straight home after disembarking to self-quarantine for 14 days. About 1,500 other passengers are from outside the county, and after disembarking they will travel home and self-quarantine.

— From Staff and Wire Reports

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.