California has report low COVID-19 positivity fee

Because the Golden State faces a triple risk of respiratory dangers — destructive wildfires, toxic air quality and a lethal pandemic — there’s a faint glimmer of hope.

Over the past seven days, simply three.5% of COVID-19 checks in California got here again optimistic, the bottom fee because the state started reporting the info in late March. A month in the past, the optimistic take a look at fee was practically twice as excessive.

The variety of new confirmed circumstances has fallen to the bottom stage since mid-June, in keeping with a Occasions evaluation of state information. Hospitalizations for COVID-19 have fallen to the bottom ranges because the begin of April, with 2,869 sufferers in hospital beds Saturday.

These optimistic indicators come as California reduces the turnaround time for coronavirus checks. Dr. Erica Pan, the appearing state public well being officer, mentioned final week that laboratories are actually producing take a look at ends in a median of 1.three days.

The information have left officers feeling cautiously optimistic about California’s progress in opposition to the pandemic because the state nears the tip of the sixth month of stay-at-home orders. They urged residents to remain vigilant and to maintain taking the precautions which might be working: carrying face coverings in public, observing social distancing with anybody outdoors the quick family and staying dwelling at any time when potential.

Officers mentioned there are two elements that might mar the speed of optimistic checks: a decline in testing throughout the wildfires and lingering questions on whether or not Labor Day gatherings triggered a surge in transmissions.

It will possibly take as much as two weeks for the COVID-19 virus to incubate within the human physique. California noticed a surge in cases, hospitalizations and deaths after the Memorial Day weekend, which included vacation gatherings, commencement events, large protests over police brutality and the reopening of bars, which have been later closed again.

Well being officers are “very anxious to determine” whether or not gatherings, events and different actions over the newest three-day weekend, which ended every week in the past, will result in one other spike in in circumstances, “which then results in extra hospitalizations and much more deaths,” mentioned Barbara Ferrer, director of Los Angeles County’s Division of Public Well being.

“We’re, the truth is, considerably challenged about getting good information as a result of we’ve had each excessive warmth, and we’ve had the fires which have created unhealthy air circumstances,” Ferrer continued. “What that’s led to, sadly, is so much much less testing.”

Ash and smoke from the Bobcat fireplace have been so robust that L.A. County was compelled to temporarily close some testing sites in the San Gabriel Valley. However, Ferrer mentioned, the overwhelming majority of testing facilities are open. She urged residents to get examined if they’ve skilled COVID-19 signs or have related to anybody who has, together with in a office or at dwelling.

Southern California officers are watching with curiosity, and warning, as San Diego and Orange counties have begun to slowly reopen indoor companies. Each counties have obtain approval from the state to reopen restaurant dining rooms, museums, movie theaters and places of worship at 25% capability.

Final week, Los Angeles County reported 9.6 transmissions per 100,000 residents. That fee should fall under 7 per 100,000 for 2 consecutive weeks earlier than Newsom would enable eating places, theaters and different nonessential companies to reopen.

For now, no L.A. County college campuses will likely be allowed to reopen to all Okay-12 college students till no less than November. Nevertheless, colleges will likely be allowed to supply in-person courses for youngsters with particular wants, supplied occupancy on campus doesn’t exceed 10% of the scholar physique.

Public well being officers have obtained 59 purposes from particular person colleges to reopen for “college students who can’t be served just about,” Ferrer mentioned.