County reports 1.3K new COVID infections, 3 deaths as delta variant surges

Coronavirus

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – As the delta variant of COVID-19 continues to surge, San Diego County public health officials reported 1,306 new infections Tuesday, along with 29 new hospitalizations and three deaths.

The data increased the county’s cumulative case number from throughout the pandemic to 325,823, while the death toll rose to 3,851.

According to state figures, there were 673 COVID-positive patients in San Diego County hospitals as of Tuesday, with 167 of them being treated in intensive care units.

There were about 200 patients hospitalized one month ago. On July 19, the number of patients in ICU care was 52.

A total of 17,064 tests were reported Tuesday, and the percentage of new positive cases over the past week was 8.3%.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted full approval to the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine for people age 16 and older on Monday, giving San Diego County leaders some hope that people who have been hesitant to get a shot will now be more open to do so.

“The COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective and free,” San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chair Nathan Fletcher said Monday. “Tuesday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration reinforced it by granting Pfizer its full approval. To protect our community, we need all San Diegans to get vaccinated.”

Approval is still pending for the Johnson & Johnson and Moderna coronavirus vaccines. Both remain available under and FDA emergency use authorization. The Pfizer vaccine also remains available under the emergency use order for people aged 12-15.

As of last Wednesday, San Diego County’s case rate per 100,000 residents was 28.7 for the general population, but that can be parsed further to just six for fully vaccinated residents and 55.7 for those not fully vaccinated, according to county data.

The average daily case rate July 7 was 2.7 per 100,000.

Officials expect the number of reported cases to keep increasing as more schools and businesses are requiring regular COVID testing.

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