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San Joaquin COVID Numbers Dip Slightly

December 2, 2020 at 4:13 pm

COVID-19 case numbers fell slightly this week in San Joaquin County, which currently has a 5.6% test positivity rate with 13.5 daily cases per 100,000 people. Last week, those numbers were 6% and 14.6 cases respectively.

However, the county’s case rate is still holding it back from moving from the purple tier to the red tier, and has been so for several weeks. San Joaquin’s positivity rate of 5.6% is well within the maximum of 8% to change to a less restrictive tier, but its case rate is more than double the threshold for red.

With colder temperatures and the holiday season coming up, these numbers might not improve. Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, warned on Wednesday that the coming months would be “the most difficult time in the public health history of this nation.”

The state could also be facing a shortage of intensive-care unit beds, with Northern California’s projected to fill up by early December if current trends continue. Newsom has said that more severe restrictions, such as a stay-at-home order, could be coming to slow the current projections.

San Joaquin’s ICU capacity was at 109% as of Tuesday, a 42% increase from last week. San Joaquin General Hospital, located in French Camp, is currently at 181% capacity.

On the brighter side, there has been some recent progress in a COVID-19 vaccine. Gov. Gavin Newsom announced on Monday that California will receive 327,000 doses from Pfizer in the next few weeks. A plan for vaccine distribution is reportedly expected this week, but it is likely that healthcare workers and nursing home residents will be prioritized.