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Coronavirus in San Diego and California: Sept. 24 - 26, 2020

This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in San Diego and California from Sept. 24 - 26, 2020

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. —  Editor’s note: This story shows updates about the coronavirus outbreak in San Diego and California from Sept. 24 - 26, 2020.  Click here for real-time updates for Sept. 27, 2020 and on.   

Key COVID-19 facts in San Diego and California:

Sept. 26

New COVID-19 funding now available for San Diego County farmers

Growers of some of San Diego County’s most lucrative crops — flowers, nursery plants and exotic fruits — can now get federal cash to cover some coronavirus-related losses.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s initial relief program left out these small farmers who contribute significantly to the county’s nearly $1.8 billion agricultural economy.

To read the full story, click here

Sept. 25

Carmel Valley takes class outside to comply with COVID-19 safety guidelines

A small, private school in San Diego has gotten creative. Students are attending in-person classes outdoors in UV-protected tents. You can read the full story here.

California virus hospitalizations could surge in next month

(Associated Press) - California has begun to see early but concerning upticks in coronavirus data after a period of decline. California Health Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said Friday the increases include the case rate, hospital emergency department visits for COVID-19 and new hospitalizations for confirmed or suspected cases. Ghaly says the trends appear largely attributable to the Labor Day holiday and could lead to an 89% increase in hospitalizations in the next month.  Ghaly noted the state is heading into another hot weekend, which could increase people gathering with others. He urged renewed efforts to prevent spread.

MiraCosta College sends lab kits to students during pandemic

More than 3,000 lab kits, ranging from blood typing chemicals to animal organs for at-home lab work, have been distributed to MiraCosta College students forced into long-distance learning by the COVID-19 pandemic, school officials said Friday.

The school's classes were moved online because of pandemic-related campus closures.

College officials said moving the entire science lab curriculum online involved determining what the in-home labs would include and assembling some kits either on campus or purchasing them from a vendor.

405 new COVID-19 cases, 2 deaths reported in San Diego County

San Diego County public health officials today confirmed 405 new COVID-19 cases, increasing the region's total to 46,001 and two additional deaths, raising that total to 775.

A man in his mid-50s and another in his late 80s, both with underlying medical conditions, died of the coronavirus Wednesday, a county official said.

Nine of the 405 new cases, and one new probable case, are connected to San Diego State University, the official said. In addition, 17 previously reported cases are now being associated with SDSU. 

Sept. 24

Scholarship named for Dr. Wooten, San Diego County's public health officer leading the fight against COVID-19

A group of San Diego leaders announced the creation of the Black Community Investment Fund at The San Diego Foundation and the Dr. Wilma Wooten Courage Scholarship Thursday to assist Black and other underrepresented communities increase racial equity and generational wealth.

The leaders, including Donna DeBerry, president of the Central San Diego Black Chamber of Commerce; Nathan Fletcher, San Diego County Supervisor; Mitch Mitchell, San Diego Gas & Electric vice president of state governmental affairs; and Mark Stuart, president of The San Diego Foundation, said the fund will prioritize and invest in community-led, innovative efforts for Black San Diegans.

"All San Diegans should have the opportunity to fulfill their highest potential, yet COVID-19 and the events of 2020 have deepened the racial inequities that exist in our community and nation," Stuart said. "By co- creating the Black Community Investment Fund, The San Diego Foundation is taking an intentional, sustained approach toward racial equity in the region so every San Diegan can thrive, prosper and feel like they belong."

The Black Community Investment Fund is seeded with a $1 million commitment from The San Diego Foundation, $250,000 from San Diego Gas & Electric, $75,000 from Wells Fargo and $25,000 from Cox Communications. Grants from the fund will focus on four key pillars impacting economic prosperity among Black San Diegans: education, employment, housing and entrepreneurism.

Californians still experiencing EDD troubles

A San Diego couple has been waiting nearly six months for a claim to be processed. Due to a computer glitch, now they're locked out of their account. 

Poway Unified to discuss how to reopen secondary schools

Families in the third-largest school district in the county are still waiting to hear when their middle and high schools will reopen.

Poway Unified Board of Education is expected to hear about a plan on Thursday to allow those students back on their campuses.

As of now, the only schools that have a return plan are elementary schools. The parents of middle and high schoolers are still waiting to move beyond virtual learning.

To read the full story, click 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. 


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 distancing measures 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

  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
  • If surfaces are dirty, clean them. Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.
  • Then, use a household disinfectant. Most common EPA-registered household disinfectants will work.

Monitor your health daily

  • Be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Take your temperature if 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.