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San Diego County reporting 40 deaths from COVID-19

“This crisis has been hard on everybody,” said Chairman Greg Cox.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — On Thursday afternoon, Dr. Wilma Wooten, Dr. Eric McDonald, Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, and Chairman Greg Cox gave a daily update on the status of COVID-19 in San Diego County. You can watch it all here.

“This crisis has been hard on everybody,” said Cox.

Fletcher reiterated people should wear face coverings if they must leave their home for an essential need.

Fletcher said as of Monday, bank and publication transportation employees will be required to wear masks under a public order.

22,098 people have been tested in San Diego County. Of those, 1,628 people have tested positive, which is a 98-person increase from Wednesday. Those patients range in age from three months old to 100 years old.

“We should be prepared for ups and downs (in numbers),” said Fletcher.

“We’re cautiously optimistic that more and more tests will become available,” said McDonald. 

Wooten said there have been 28 confirmed outbreaks. 

“Our largest cluster has just over 30 patients in it,” said McDonald. 

40 people have died from COVID-19 in San Diego County, according to Wooten.

Wooten said that of those 40 deaths, 16 people were white, 10 people were Hispanic, two people were Asian, and one person was multiracial. Racial background data wasn’t available for the other 11 people that died. Wooten said that no black, Pacific Islander, or American Indian people have died from COVID-19 in San Diego County. 

The county released a new interactive dashboard to better display this data. McDonald said that while the county has only publicly reported the number of confirmed positive cases, it may soon start discussing “probable cases” of COVID-19. 

All the speakers emphasized the importance of following the stay-at-home order and to not become complacent. 

“If we loosen up the health officer’s orders that have been implemented already, we will continue to see our numbers increase, maybe exponentially,” said Wooten. 

With Passover and Easter this weekend, Fletcher said people should utilize online religious services instead of in-person ones and should only physically see people in their household. 

RELATED: San Diego County officials publish racial breakdown of local coronavirus cases, deaths

County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said the county was estimating the recoveries by taking the last known positive tests for the illness, waiting two weeks and then subtracting any loss of life. It is a rough estimate, but does give some semblance of the county's picture, he said, noting it was similar to how Johns Hopkins University tracked cases and recovery worldwide. 

RELATED: Watch live: Governor Newsom provides daily COVID-19 update for California

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