Due to the recent increase in the number of COVID-19 cases, Orange County moved to “high” community transmission status effective July 14, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID- 19 Community Level Data Tracker.
As of July 15, Orange County’s seven-day average COVID-19 case rate has increased to 33.1 per 100,000 people (threshold >20.0 CDC) and the average daily case count of COVID- 19 is 1,068. The positivity rate rose to 17.4%, with 277 hospitalizations and 35 intensive care admissions. With the widespread use of rapid home antigen tests, which go unreported, the true number of COVID-19 cases across the country is underestimated.
“We are seeing a summer surge of cases and hospitalizations, and this shift to the ‘HIGH’ level of transmission confirms that,” said Dr. Clayton Chau, director of the OC health care agency. “To protect those at high risk, we recommend that OC residents continue to mask up in indoor public places, especially those who are at high risk or who live with loved ones who have comorbidities, are immunocompromised or are likely to fall ill.”
The Orange County Health Care Agency (HCA) recommends residents take preventative measures to minimize the risk of serious illness and advises the following:
• Wear a properly fitted mask in indoor public places, especially for people at high risk or living with people with comorbidities or immunocompromised conditions. Refer to state guidelines for the use of face masks for complete guidance on masking.
• Be up to date with your vaccinations by completing your primary series, receiving your extra dose if you are immunocompromised, and receiving your booster dose if you are eligible, to maximize your immunity against serious infections. Visit www.Othena.com or https://myturn.ca.gov/ to schedule a vaccine.
• Keep a safe distance from people outside your household to avoid close contact with unvaccinated or asymptomatic people.
• If you have recently attended a high-risk event, traveled, or been in close contact with someone with COVID-19, self-monitor for symptoms and get tested. Stay home and follow self-quarantine advice.
• If you are sick, stay home, follow self-isolation advice and get tested.
Patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 and are seeking to determine if they would be eligible for therapeutic medications should contact their healthcare provider or locate a Test to Treat site. As of July 6, state-licensed pharmacists can prescribe Paxlovid to eligible patients, with certain limitations, to ensure proper patient assessment. Contact your local pharmacy to discuss details.
The CDC launched its Data Tracker earlier this year to create standardized COVID-19 data across the country to provide a county-level view of key data to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. The data measures cases per 100,000 population and hospitalization rates to segment low, medium or high levels of transmission. To learn more, visit: CDC
For more information on COVID-19 information and resources, including case counts, vaccination, and testing in Orange County, visit ochealthinfo.com/covid.