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Coronavirus in San Diego and California: April 26 - 28 (midday), 2020

This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in San Diego and California from April 26 - 28 (midday), 2020

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Editor’s note: This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in San Diego and California from April 26 - 28 (midday), 2020.  Click here for real-time updates for April 28, 2020 and on.   

Key facts in San Diego:

Key facts in California:

  • California governor issued a statewide stay at home order on March 19.
  • There are 43,464 confirmed cases in California and 1,755 deaths, according to the CA Department of Public Health
  • 3,372 Californians are hospitalized with confirmed cases of COVID-19, and 1,185 are in the ICU, according to the CA Department of Public Health.
  • More than 553,409 have been conducted as of April 26, according to the CA Department of Public Health.
  • A senior hotline has been set up to answer questions at 833-544-2374.

April 28

Navy destroyer with COVID-19 outbreak stops in San Diego

A deployed Navy destroyer experiencing an outbreak of the novel coronavirus made a stop Tuesday in San Diego, where military personnel will disinfect the ship, the Navy reported. The guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd was conducting counter-drug operations off the Pacific coast of South America last week when sailors began exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.

Read the full story here.

Governor Newsom to lay out roadmap to reopening California’s economy

Governor Gavin Newsom and health officials will provide their daily update on COVID-19 in California Tuesday at 12:00 p.m. The media briefing will be streamed live here and across News 8's social media pages.

Newsom is considering a strategy for reopening business in a state divided between rural areas with small numbers of coronarivus cases and urban areas struggling with still-rising death tolls.

Newsom on Tuesday plans to outline what it will take to ease his stay-at-home order that closed most businesses.

Read the full story here.

April 27

San Diego City leaders tout encouraging first day of beach re-openings

San Diegans' first sanctioned day back at the beach following weeks of COVID-19-related coastal closures went well today, with visitors enjoying the surf and sand while largely complying with public health requirements, city leaders reported. 

Mayor Kevin Faulconer described the start of the first phase of the region's return to the shores as "very, very encouraging."

Read the full story here.

Scripps Research looking for blood samples from COVID-19 survivors

Scientists at Scripps Research in La Jolla are looking for COVID-19 survivors to give blood samples.

Researchers hope to identify the strongest antibodies that can be used to neutralize the deadly coronavirus.

Dr. Thomas Rogers, an infectious disease and immunology specialist with Scripps Research, said he is looking for a needle in a haystack of antibodies. He hopes to collect thousands of blood samples from patients who have recovered from COVID-19 by sending those patients a blood test in the mail.

San Diego County Sheriff's deputies sing to seniors


Sheriff's deputies are bringing some song and compassion to seniors in the community. The program is called "You Are Not Alone." You can watch the story here.

1st phase of beach reopening underway in San Diego

Beaches in Coronado, Encinitas, Oceanside and San Diego reopened for ocean access and limited recreation activities Monday, but numerous beaches in San Diego County remain closed.

Several beaches opened at sunrise, allowing surfers, swimmers, kayakers and paddleboarders in the ocean, as well as runners and walkers on the sand. But group gatherings, parking in lots and lying down on the beach are not allowed. Those activities could be allowed in Phase 2 of the reopening plans. 

Click here for full story.

Southwestern College awarded grants to help students during COVID-19 pandemic 

Southwestern College announced Monday it will use two grants totaling $135,000 to help students affected by the COVID-19 pandemic complete their semesters online and secure much-needed housing, food and other necessities.

The grants awarded by the San Diego Foundation will allow the college to purchase and distribute computers and wifi hotspots, in addition to helping students take care of day-to-day needs.

Southwestern College said that by combining $75,000 in grant funding from the San Diego Foundation with other funding sources, the college will have the means to distribute 1,030 computers for remote learning needs.

San Diego County COVID-19 cases at 3,141 with 113 reported deaths

San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher announced 98 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday bringing the total to 3,141 cases in the county. Fletcher also reported two additional deaths bringing the total reported deaths to 113.  

Click here for the full story.

2 new appointment-only COVID-19 testing sites open in Escondido and Chula Vista

Supervisor Greg Cox announced two new, appointment-only COVID-19 testing sites were opened Monday in Escondido and Chula Vista. One of the drive-up free testing sites is at the North Inland Live Well Center in Escondido, and the other is at the Live Well Center in Chula Vista.

A doctor referral and appointment are needed to visit the testing sites. People with symptoms who have a health care provider should contact their doctor to get tested. People with symptoms without a provider or health care coverage can call 2-1-1 and ask to speak to the nurse triage line to request a referral. The nurses can give a referral and make an appointment to get tested.

Click here for the full story.

UC San Diego Health finds loss of smell could be sign of milder cases of COVID-19

Researchers at UC San Diego Health have found that loss of smell related to COVID-19 suggests the resulting illness is more likely to be mild to moderate, a potential early indicator that could help health care providers determine which patients may require hospitalization.

The findings come in the wake of a similar study involving some of the same researchers, who found evidence linking loss of olfactory function to the novel coronavirus.

Click here for the full story.

Governor Newsom gives COVID-19 update

Newsom expressed concerns over people that flocked to the beach in Ventura and Orange Counties without respecting physical distancing.  

43,464 Californians have tested positive for COVID-19. 1,755 of those people have died. 45 people have died in the last 48 hours, according to Newsom.  

You can watch the full update here.

Some beaches in San Diego open Monday for limited use, ocean access

San Diego County health officials have amended two COVID-19 public health orders, lifting ocean restrictions for swimmers, surfers and those using kayaks or paddleboards. The access to oceans on several county and city beaches goes into effect Monday, while some cities have opted not to open their ocean access just yet.  

Click here for the full story.

April 26

Lawsuit filed demanding ‘drastic reduction’ in people at Otay Mesa Detention Center amid COVID-19 outbreak

Several civil rights and immigration organizations have filed a class-action lawsuit demanding a “drastic reduction” in the number of people at the Otay Mesa Detention Center where a COVID-19 outbreak has infected both detainees and staff members. The National Immigration Project, American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of San Diego & Imperial Counties, American Civil Liberties Union, and Ropes & Gray, LLP, filed the lawsuit together late Saturday in U.S. District Court.   

The Otay Mesa Detention Center has had one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks at a detention center in the U.S., according to the local ACLU. As of Sunday, the organization said 111 people in custody had tested positive for the novel coronavirus along with eight medical staff, eight ICE employees at the facility and 17 staff members of CoreCivic – the private company that runs the facility.   

Click here for the full story.

2 people at San Diego Convention Center homeless shelter test positive for COVID-19

Two homeless people who were sheltering at the San Diego Convention Center have tested positive for the coronavirus, city officials said Sunday.

One patient was moved to a motel room and the other was later located and moved to a hotel room for isolation, according to Ashley Bailey of the city of San Diego.

The two people who tested positive are the only positive tests to date after more than 660 tests have been given to shelter residents, staff and volunteers, Bailey said.

Click here for full story.

San Diego County reports no new COVID-19 deaths, cases up by 100

The County of San Diego is no longer holding weekend media briefings but does provide updated COVID-19 data each day. Here is today’s COVID-19 update from the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency: 

  • Total cases among San Diego County residents are now at 3,043, an increase of 100 from yesterday. 
  • 696 or 22.9% of cases have required hospitalization.
  • 227 or 7.5% of all cases had to be placed in intensive care.
  • Of 1,297 tests reported to the County yesterday, 8% were positive. 
  • No new deaths of county residents were reported. The total remains at 111.

Stay-at-home order protests continue Sunday in San Diego County

The limited reopening of San Diego beaches is set to begin on Monday morning, but protests against stay-at-home orders still continued Sunday across the county. One protest began at 1 p.m. at the main lifeguard tower in Pacific Beach with about 200 - 300 participants, according to the San Diego Police Department. Another smaller protest in Imperial Beach kicked off at the same time calling for the beach and local businesses to reopen.  

Click here for the full story.

Carlsbad City Council votes to keep beach, parks, trails closed for now

The Carlsbad City Council voted Saturday to keep its public areas closed for the time being. The council will hold a special meeting Friday to review plans for a “phased reopening” of the areas.  

The specific areas to be discussed at Friday’s meeting include Carlsbad parks and trails, a city-owned golf course, and a three-quarter-of-a-mile stretch of beach north of Oak Avenue, according to the city council. 

Click here for the full story.

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RELATED: Carlsbad City Council votes to keep beach, parks, trails closed for now

RELATED: San Diego Sheriffs make multiple arrests at Encinitas protest

RELATED: San Diego mayor, police chief, and lifeguard chief go over rules for opening beaches

View all News 8 coverage of coronavirus / COVID-19  
 
News 8 has joined forces with The San Diego Foundation to raise immediate, emergency funds for our most vulnerable neighbors in need. Here is how you can help.  

We also have a Frequently Asked Questions page we will continue updating with the latest information and reports.  

Click here to watch "Facts Not Fear," a News 8 Special on coronavirus from March 26, 2020. 

BACKGROUND  

According to the CDC, coronavirus (COVID-19) is a family of viruses that is spreadable from person to person. Coronavirus is believed to have been first detected in a seafood market in Wuhan, China in December 2019. If someone is sick with coronavirus, the symptoms they may show include mild to severe respiratory illness, cough, and difficulty breathing.  

Currently, there is no vaccine, however, the CDC suggests the following precautions, as with any other respiratory illness:  

Know how it spreads 

  • There is no vaccine  

  • The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus 

  • It is thought to spread mainly from person-person between people in close contact 

  • And believed to be spread by respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes 

Protect yourself 

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds 

  • If soap and water aren't available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol 

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth 

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick 

  • Put distance between yourselves and others 

Protect others 

  • Stay home when you are sick 

  • Wear a facemask if you are sick 

  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash 

  • If you don't have tissue, cough or sneeze into the inside of your elbow 

  • Immediately wash your hands after coughing and sneezing  

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe 

You can find information on disinfecting and cleaning on the CDC's How to Protect Yourself page. 

The California Department of Public Health has issued guidance on the use of cloth face coverings to protect against the spread of the novel coronavirus COVID-19.  

The County of San Diego has made face coverings mandatory for those working with the public including grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, convenience stores, and similar businesses. 

While officials say these face coverings are not a substitute for practices like social distancing and handwashing, there is evidence to suggest that the use of cloth face coverings by the public during a pandemic could help reduce disease transmission. Officials do not recommend the public use N-95 or surgical masks which are needed by health care workers and first responders.