11% of positive coronavirus tests in San Diego County are from vaccinated people
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – With updated numbers expected Monday, San Diego County’s Health and Human Services Agency was seeing a significant spike in COVID-19 cases, as the most recent data showed 1,264 new infections — the highest total since Feb. 5.
Despite boasting over our high vaccination rates, San Diego County Health officials are once again warning against rising numbers, and specifically blaming the unvaccinated.
The most recent numbers were released Friday. In the 30 days between June 21 and July 20, 6,572 San Diegans tested positive for COVID-19. Of that group, 11% were fully vaccinated, while 89% were not.
“We are facing a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” said San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chair Nathan Fletcher. “A vast majority of the increase in cases are from those who are unvaccinated and they account for nearly all of the hospitalizations. The way to slow the increase and protect yourself is to trust your doctor and get a vaccine.”
On June 21, just 56 new cases of the virus were reported. On July 7, the number of new cases crossed the 200 mark and has not receded.
“The vaccines are effective in preventing severe illness or death from COVID-19,” said Dr. Wilma Wooten, county public health officer. “If you have not gotten vaccinated, the time to get vaccinated is now. If you are late for your second dose, the time to get that second shot is now.”
Community outbreaks, hospitalizations and ICU admissions were also up dramatically. The county Friday reported an additional two community outbreaks, bringing the total number of outbreaks in the previous seven days to 25. One month earlier, on June 23, only five community outbreaks were reported.
A total of 98% of hospitalizations in the last 30 days are in individuals who are not vaccinated or have not completed the full series of the two-dose vaccine, according to the Friday data.
“In the last few weeks, individuals who were not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 were seven times more likely to contract the virus,” said Dr. Seema Shah, medical director of HHSA’s Epidemiology and Immunization Services branch. “The more infectious Delta variant is on its way to becoming the dominant strain among San Diego County residents and a single dose of the vaccine is only about 30% effective in protecting people from getting sick.”
Despite the increase in cases and hospitalizations, there was no word from county officials regarding a return to the mask mandate, as Los Angeles did earlier this month. But that is certainly still a possibility. San Diego County leaders have been mysteriously quiet on that topic, and have not yet said they would not re-implement one.
Close to 150,000 San Diegans are only partially vaccinated and overdue for their second shot. The county is working with medical providers to help them remind patients and is also using the San Diego Immunization Registry to develop follow-up reminders for those who are behind schedule.