Public health officials report 14th virus death

County remains at ‘substantial’ risk level

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San Benito County Public Health officials are reporting the number of new Covid-19 cases are still declining in the county, however, another death was disclosed in last week’s newsletter.

As of Oct. 19, county officials have reported 14 deaths and 1,403 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in San Benito County. It’s the first death in the county since Oct. 7. Confirmed cases include patients who have since recovered and those who are deceased. 

The county’s Covid-19 dashboard shows that there are currently 18 active cases with two new cases as of Monday afternoon. There’s been 15,776 tested for the novel coronavirus locally. Of these, 14,346 have tested negative and 1,371 patients have recovered.

The data from the Public Health Services’ latest community newsletter shows that of the 1,403 positive cases of Covid-19, 48 patients are in the 0-4 age group; 350 are in the 5-24 age group; 613 are in the 25-49; 269 patients are in the 50-64 age group; and 122 are age 64 or older.

County public health officials report that the number of new daily cases of Covid-19 continues to drop, speeding up progress to move into the next level of the California Blueprint for a safer economy.

The data from the community newsletter shows that San Benito County continues to be at the red “substantial” risk level as of Oct. 19. But that can change soon if the number of cases continues to decline. 

The county, according to state data, had a case rate of 3.8 daily new cases per 100,000 residents and a test positivity rate of 2.8 percent for the week ending Oct. 3. 

The limits for the “substantial” tier are 4-7 daily new cases per 100,000 residents, and a positivity rate between 5-8 percent. 

The new numbers are slightly below the previous data that showed 6.5 daily new cases per 100,000 residents and a test positivity rate of 4.5 percent for the week ending Sept. 26.

At a minimum, counties must remain in a tier for at least three weeks before moving forward from the red “substantial” tier to the orange “moderate” tier after meeting the criteria of the less restrictive level for 14 consecutive days. 

The limits for the “moderate” tier are no more than 1-3.9 daily new cases per 100,000 residents, and a positivity rate between 2-4.9 percent. Data is reviewed weekly and tiers are updated on Tuesdays.