San Diego County public health nurses at a drive-through coronavirus testing site in Imperial Beach. REUTERS/Mike Blake

San Diego County public health officials have reported 352 new COVID-19 cases and no new fatalities, raising the region’s total to 57,102 cases with deaths remaining at 891.

Of the 12,879 tests reported Saturday, 3% returned positive with 239 people hospitalized.

The county avoided the state’s purple tier, the most restrictive, for yet another week on Tuesday, remaining in the less restrictive red tier of the state’s four-tiered coronavirus monitoring system.

The county’s adjusted case rate dropped to 6.5 new daily COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population.

According to the California Department of Public Health, the county’s unadjusted case rate is 7.4 per 100,000 — enough to be in the purple tier, which has a floor of 7 per 100,000. However, the high volume of tests the county is able to perform daily allows for an adjustment from the state. This adjustment has kept the county in the red tier for several weeks, saving it from having to shut down nearly all nonessential indoor businesses.

The state data, updated every Tuesday, reflects the previous week’s case data to determine where counties stand in the state’s reopening system.

San Diego County did show modest improvement, dropping 0.4 from last week’s unadjusted case rate of 7.8. The testing positivity rate continued an upward trend, rising 0.2% from last week to reach 3.5%, but remains low enough for this metric to remain in the orange tier. If a county reports statistics meeting metrics in a higher tier for two consecutive weeks, it will move into that more restrictive tier for a minimum of three weeks.

The state’s health equity metric, which looks at the testing positivity for areas with the lowest healthy conditions, dropped from 5.5% to 5.1% and entered the orange tier. This metric does not move counties backward to more restrictive tiers, but is required to advance.

— City News Service

Show comments