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Coronavirus in San Diego and California: Aug. 2 - 4 (afternoon), 2020

This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in San Diego and California from Aug. 2 - 4 (afternoon), 2020.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Editor’s note: This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in San Diego and California from Aug. 2 - 4 (afternoon), 2020. Click here for real-time updates for Aug. 4, 2020 and on.  

Key COVID-19 facts in San Diego and California:

Aug. 4

San Diego City Council moves $700,000 in CARES Act funds to underserved businesses 

The San Diego City Council voted unanimously today to allocate $700,000 from San Diego's Small Business Relief Fund toward helping hard-hit businesses in historically underserved communities to survive during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Click here for the full story.

San Diego County 

San Diego County sees uptick in community outbreaks over summer

San Diego County gave a COVID-19 briefing Monday afternoon, which you can watch here. A total of 343 new cases Monday raises the county total to 30,226. No new deaths were reported Monday, keeping that number at 565.

Of 6,536 tests the county recorded Monday, just over 5% of them returned positive, bringing the 14-day rolling average of positive tests down to 5.3%. The state's target is fewer than 8% of tests returning positive.

County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher described July as a "roller coaster," but the end of the month showed promising trends which he hopes will carry on into August and beyond.

The rate of the population testing positive has dropped to 118.2 per 100,000 people. The state's goal is be below 100 per 100,000. A week ago that number was above 140 per 100,000. There have been 132 confirmed community outbreaks since June 1.

Aug. 3

California health officials release guidance on elementary school waivers for in-person instruction, youth sports

The California Department of Public Health on Monday released details on the process for elementary schools to request a waiver in order to resume in-person instruction in counties like San Diego which remain on the state monitoring list. The department also issued guidance on youth sports including physical distancing requirements. 

Last month, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that counties on the state's watch list within the prior 14 days cannot reopen campuses until their counties stabilize coronavirus infections and hospitalizations. However, "a waiver provision" appearing as a footnote in the five-page framework for reopening schools said it could allow qualifying elementary schools an exemption from distance-learning, even if the county remained on the state watchlist. 

Click here for the full story.

Ramona gym owner facing charges of violating state public health orders

he owner of a Ramona gym has been charged with keeping his business open in violation of California's COVID-19-related public health orders.

Peter San Nicolas, who owns Ramona Fitness Center, faces five misdemeanor counts of violating the California Emergency Services Act, according to a criminal complaint filed Friday by the San Diego County District Attorney's Office.

The complaint alleges violations of the health order requiring that all gyms and fitness centers remain closed. The violations allegedly occurred on June 2, June 4, June 5, July 15 and July 17, according to the complaint. Each count carries a penalty of up to six months in jail or a $1,000 fine. 

Click here for the full story.

Gov. Newsom gives California COVID-19 update

Newsom said the state will apply the same efforts and strategies it did to Imperial County to the state's Central Valley counties. While Newsom said the 7-day positivity rate is down, he encouraged Californians to remain vigilant. You can watch the full update here.

Sweetwater Union High School District begins online distance learning

It’s the first day of school for the South Bay district, and things are going to look a lot different due to the coronavirus pandemic. The district has adopted a distanced learning model, which means teachers will for the most part be leading classes online from their homes. 

School officials said the return to school will be based on public health orders and that they will reassess their situation at three key dates during the year - September 21, 2020, November 30, 2020, and March 1, 2021. 

Click here for the full story.

Aug. 2

Sports return in the COVID era

After months of not having any live sports, this Sunday there were events in six professional leagues. The NBA, NHL, MLB, WNBA, PGA, and NASCAR all broadcast their sport with no fans in attendance. 

But even with no crowds of in-person fans, having sports backs means getting back another comfort from the times before the coronavirus pandemic.

Click here for the full story.

306 new COVID-cases, no new deaths reported in San Diego County 

San Diego County public health officials Sunday reported 306 newly confirmed cases and no additional deaths from COVID-19, bringing the county's totals to 29,883  cases and 565 deaths. Of the laboratory-confirmed reported to the county on Aug. 1, 5% were positive new cases. The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is now at 5.3%.

No new community outbreaks of COVID-19 were identified Sunday, with the number of outbreaks in the past week at 37. The number of community outbreaks is more than five times above the trigger of seven or more in seven days.

Get more information about San Diego County's coronavirus statistics here.

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.

BACKGROUND: 

On February 11, 2020 the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease that is causing the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak, first identified in Wuhan China. The new name of this disease is coronavirus disease 2019, abbreviated as COVID-19. In COVID-19, "CO" stands for "corona," "VI" for "virus," and "D" for disease. Formerly, this disease was referred to as “2019 novel coronavirus” or “2019-nCoV”.

There are many types of human coronaviruses including some that commonly cause mild upper-respiratory tract illnesses. COVID-19 is a new disease, caused by a novel (or new) coronavirus that has not previously been seen in humans.

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

Know how it spreads: 

  • The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
  • The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
    • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
    • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks.
    • These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
    • Some recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms.

Protect yourself and others

Wash your hands often

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • It’s especially important to wash:
    • Before eating or preparing food
    • Before touching your face
    • After using the restroom
    • After leaving a public place
    • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
    • After handling your cloth face covering
    • After changing a diaper
    • After caring for someone sick
    • After touching animals or pets
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Avoid close contact 

Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others

  • You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.
  • The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected.
  • Everyone should wear a cloth face cover in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancingmeasures are difficult to maintain.
    • Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
  • Do NOT use a facemask meant for a healthcare worker. Currently, surgical masks and N95 respirators are critical supplies that should be reserved for healthcare workers and other first responders.
  • Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.

Cover coughs and sneezes

  • Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow and do not spit.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Clean and disinfect

Monitor your health daily

  • Be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Take your temperatureif symptoms develop.
    • Don’t take your temperature within 30 minutes of exercising or after taking medications that could lower your temperature, like acetaminophen.
  • Follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop.

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. 

As of April 4, 2020, all employees in San Diego County who may have contact with the public in any grocery store, pharmacy/drug store, restaurant or food establishments, convenience store or gas station are required to wear a cloth face covering while at work as an additional measure to help “flatten the curve” in the San Diego region.

Violations can be reported online.

As of May 1, San Diego County requires everyone in the county to wear face coverings in many public settings. The coverings help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and are part of our path to reopening San Diego. See full health order here.

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.