|Carlsbad, CA — July 2, 2020 As we head into a holiday weekend known for neighborhood get-togethers and backyard barbecues, COVID-19 cases are increasing more quickly than ever. New restrictions are being put in place across California, and yesterday county health officials said we too are headed for the state’s “watch list” as soon as tomorrow.|
False sense of security? We are, in a way, victims of our own success. Early on, we hunkered down, closed down schools, businesses, beaches and pretty much any type of activity where people come into close contact with one another. It worked. We bought ourselves time to increase the capacity of our health care system, get needed supplies and ventilators in place, and “socialize” new behaviors like wearing masks and keeping 6 feet from others when we are out in public.
When we started to reopen, understandably, people were eager to get out, get back to some sense of normalcy. Things were going OK, until they weren’t. We’re now seeing the highest numbers to date in number of cases, hospitalizations and ICU admissions.
Diseases take time to incubate, and they spread exponentially. The cases we see today were likely contracted two weeks ago, some from people who didn’t even realize they were contagious. It’s imperative we do everything we can in the coming days to slow the spread.
New autopsy data COVID-19 is caused by a novel coronavirus, meaning a virus that is new. Because so little is known about it, we’ve already seen medical advice change, the list of symptoms grow and treatment approaches evolve.
At first, the medical system was too busy caring for the sick to perform autopsies on the dead. Now that is starting to change. Yesterday’s Washington Post reported findings from the first large batch of autopsy reports from patients age 32 to 90 who died at six different institutions. The results should give us all pause. “Among the most important findings, consistent across several studies, is confirmation the virus appears to attack the lungs the most ferociously. They also found the pathogen in parts of the brain, kidneys, liver, gastrointestinal tract and spleen and in the endothelial cells that line blood vessels, as some had previously suspected. Researchers also found widespread clotting in many organs.”
One report showed that oxygen deprivation of the brain and the formation of blood clots could start early in the disease process, which could change how people are treated at home, even if they don’t need to be hospitalized.
I’m certainly no medical expert, and we have already seen that conclusions about COVID-19 released one day could change the next. I share this information only to emphasize that with all that remains unknown about this novel coronavirus, we must do everything we can to avoid infection and avoid infecting others.
“Watch list” and what that means The state has six triggers or criteria it’s monitoring to flag counties where additional health precautions may be needed:
Average case rate of more than 150 per 100,000 in population, based on a seven-day average. We are at 191 average case rate of more than 100 per 100,000 in population, based on a 14-day average. We are at 105 Average of more than 25 new cases per 100,000 in population and an 8% or higher rolling seven-day average of cases compared to number of tests. We are 5.5% Increase in hospitalizations of 10% or more (this is calculated by taking the average of the past three days and comparting it to the average of the three days before that). We are at 6% Less than 20% of staffed ICU beds are available. We have 33% available Less than 25% of ventilators are available. We have 66% available.
On June 30, the San Diego County was flagged because it surpassed the state’s trigger of no more than 100 positive cases per every 100,000 residents. (The data shows we are also over the seven-day trigger. You can get the explanation of that and more details about the state’s triggers by watching the news conference where the state watch list is explained.)
If the county has another day over that threshold, our county will be placed on the state’s “watch list” on July 3 and monitored for an additional three days.
If the average 14-day rate of new cases does not fall below 100 per 100,000 in population by July 6, then we would be required to adopt more restrictive measures for three weeks, including closing bars (San Diego has already done this) and closing indoor activities at:
Restaurants -Movie theaters, family entertainment centers and cardrooms -Museums and zoos
To date, 19 other counties have already reached this point.
County triggers The state has six triggers or criteria it’s watching; the county has 13.
As you can see, we are over the threshold for community outbreaks and our ability to trace cases. In terms of outbreaks, here are the sourcesCarlsbad numbers
Carlsbad has 22 more cases than my last report on Tuesday for a new total of 182. We estimate 86 are currently active, the highest by far since the start of the pandemic. In terms of cases per 100,000 in population, we still have the lowest in the county, but the number is going up.Here is a link to all the charts and graphs released by the county yesterday. And here’s a link to the county website with the interactive dashboard and more detailed info.
Stay Safe to Stay Open campaign We’ve officially launched our Stay Safe to Stay Open campaign, working with the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce and the Carlsbad Village Association. Check out this new video and please share it on your social media channels with the hashtag #StaySafeStayOpen.You should also be seeing social media posts from the city and local businesses and their employees urging the public to follow the recommended health precautions so they don’t have to close again.State beach parking lots closed for the weekend The state announced it will close all state beach parking lots for the holiday weekend, Friday through Sunday. This includes the Tamarack parking lot and the Ponto parking lot. Beaches will remain open. The county explained the rationale for keeping beaches open – no outbreaks have yet been traced to outdoor locations. Indoor spread seems to be the biggest concern.
The city will not close any of our parking (Carlsbad Boulevard, etc.), but we will have officers and others out helping to ensure compliance with physical distancing, face covering and no gathering. Please help by doing everything you can to demonstrate adherence to the health precautions. Let’s face it, the only way we are going to beat this is if each of us takes individual responsibility. Your leadership will make a huge difference. People look to their friends and neighbors for social cues. Setting the right example will increase overall compliance.
A final plea As we have seen in the past three months, we CAN slow the spread of COVID-19. If we each do our part, case numbers will once again go down, lives will be saved, more businesses will survive and fewer people will lose their jobs.
DO NOT gather with friends yet. It’s too soon…Don’t let your teens get together with friends; don’t arrange play dates for your kids. City camps are open if you’re looking for kids’ activities. Again, we are enforcing very strict health precautions (you can see …how this is working in this video)
Don’t just bring your face covering with you when you leave home, have it visible, around your neck, so people start to see that this is expected When in doubt, put it on, and always wear it when you enter a business, take public transportation and any other time when you might come within 6 feet of someone not from your household Wash your hands often (and bring sanitizer with you); don’t touch your face Become familiar with the symptoms of COVID-19 (this list is getting longer as health experts learn more)
With the holiday weekend coming up, please take this to heart. I know it’s hard. We want to see our friends again. We miss our extended families. But the stakes are high, and we need to stick close to home and follow all the recommended health precautions.
Holiday schedule City offices will be closed tomorrow for the holiday. Trash pickup schedule is normal this year because the holiday falls on a Saturday. I’ll be back Tuesday, and in the meantime you can get updates from all the usual sources:
City’s COVID-19 webpage City social media County of San Diego COVID-19 page State COVID-19 page You are also welcome to reach out at any time with questions or concerns. Email [email protected] or post a comment on social media.
Thank you for supporting the city and our community during this time. Your individual actions make a difference!
Scott Chadwick, City Manager City of Carlsbad | Website
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