Lake County, CA (May 25, 2020) – This Memorial Day weekend was sunny and busy in Lake County, which was especially welcome after the relaxation of some restrictions on restaurants and businesses. Most people opted to stay safe and protect others, wearing cloth facial coverings and following social distancing recommendations. Activity on the lake was widespread, with some out-of-towners present. Overall, county residents enjoyed a bit more freedom, without overdoing it. Thank you to those continuing to take essential precautions.
Two New Cases Identified, Local Infection Rate Remains Low; Zero Current Hospitalizations
Given recent increases in community activity and broader availability of testing, new infections are probable right now, and we reported 4 new cases last week. An impromptu testing site was created last Friday to follow-up on some contacts from a previous case, and results began returning over the weekend.
2 of the 40 tests received thus far were positive (5% infection rate for that sample), and 55 tests are pending. We now have a total of 14 Lake County cases. Those that newly tested positive are stable and isolating at home, and further contact tracing has begun.
I am very pleased to report the previous cases are all doing well, and the person who was recently in the hospital has been released to their home in good condition.
New State Guidance Issued Today
Today, the Governor announced some changes in statewide restrictions.
• While online services and activities remain encouraged, in-person religious services and cultural ceremonies can resume, with precautions in place: https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-places-of-worship.pdf
• Low-risk retail establishments are reopening statewide: https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-retail.pdf
• Guidelines were also issued for groups exercising their Constitutional right to protest: https://covid19.ca.gov/stay-home-except-for-essential-needs/#top (under “Protected activities”)
Guidance on other sectors, including salons and barber shops, is expected soon.
We continue to try to strike a balance between allowing more activity and protecting people from the transmission of the virus. Over the next 10-14 days, we will monitor the effects increased social mixing and out-of-town visitors have on the infection rate in Lake County.
We all hope to move forward; we want to get back to some semblance of normal. Observation of recommended precautions will help us get there, step by step.
If someone believes they may have been exposed, how do they get tested?
We now offer Drive-Thru testing at different locations around the county, open daily during the week. People in need of testing can go to the Verily website and get screened and make an appointment:
Frequently Asked Questions on Drive-Thru Testing are available here:
For Lake County-specific Coronavirus information, please continue to visit the Lake County Health Services Department’s website, http://health.co.lake.ca.us.
The Lake County Coronavirus Response Hub has additional valuable resources:
If you still have questions, please send an email request to [email protected] or call during business hours: 707-263-8174.
Gary Pace, MD, MPH