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SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego County public health officials reported 1,025 new COVID-19 cases and five deaths Monday as the region’s largest school district — San Diego Unified — welcomed students back to campus.

Monday’s data increased the county’s cumulative case count to 333,011, while the death toll climbed to 3,885.

Meanwhile, the San Diego Unified School District opened the 2021-22 school year Monday with COVID-19 safety measures in place to help prevent the spread of the virus, especially among students who are not yet eligible for the vaccine.

To reduce the possibility of COVID-19 transmission at schools, the district encourages eligible students — those age 12 and older — to get vaccinated.

The district also adopted measures that include upgraded air filtration, disinfectant sprayers for school buses and requiring face masks both indoors and outdoors, except when students are eating or participating in physical education, athletics or visual and performing arts. All San Diego Unified staff will be required to get vaccinated or be prepared to take part in weekly COVID-19 testing.

“For over a year, we’ve been working closely with a team of scientists and doctors at UC San Diego, as well as county health officials, to design a roadmap for reopening, staying open and keeping students safe,” SDUSD Physician Dr. Howard Taras said.

The county’s number of total hospitalized patients with the virus decreased by six, the state reported Monday, bringing the region’s total to 658. Additionally, two new patients were admitted to local intensive care units, bringing the total to 181.

One month ago, there were 329 people in local hospitals being treated for the virus, 62 of whom were in ICU beds.

A total of 14,326 tests were reported by the county on Monday, and the percentage of new positive cases over the past week was 7.3%.

San Diego County’s case rate per 100,000 residents was 35.2 in data released Wednesday, compared to the previous week’s 28.7. That number can be further parsed to 9.3 for fully vaccinated people and 66.9 for those not fully vaccinated.

Both of those numbers increased from the previous week — from six and 55.7, respectively — but the rate of not-fully vaccinated people is seven times higher than those fully vaccinated.

Perhaps more tellingly, the hospitalization rate for the unvaccinated is 32 times higher than those fully vaccinated.

The average daily case rate July 28 was 13.4 per 100,000, according to county data.

More than 4.5 million vaccine doses have been administered in the county, with 2.38 million — or around 85% of San Diego County residents — having received at least one dose. Fully vaccinated county residents now number close to 2.09 million, or around 74.4% of the county’s eligible population.

No-cost COVID-19 vaccines are widely available in the region. They can be found at medical providers, retail pharmacies, community clinics and county public health centers for people who do not have a medical provider. For a list of locations and more information, go to

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