San Diego County Taken Off State's Coronavirus Watch List

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Following several days of COVID-19 data trending in a positive direction, San Diego County has been taken off of California’s monitoring list.

The state announced that as of Tuesday, San Diego County has been removed from its watch list for successfully reporting for three consecutive days an average rate of less than 100 new cases per 100,000 residents.

Public Health Officer Wilma Wooten said Monday that being removed from the state watch list does not mean businesses can reopen.

What it does mean is that schools K-12 will be able to reopen for in-person education as soon as Sept. 1 if San Diego County can remain off the state’s watch list for another 14 days.

To continue the county's trajectory in the right direction, Dri. Wooten said San Diegans must to continue to wear face coverings, keep six feet apart, avoid large gatherings, frequently wash your hands and stay home when sick.

It is up to the state to decide when and how businesses will be allowed to reopen, even if that guidance comes after the 14-day waiting period, Wooten said. So far, that guidance has not yet been received leaving hundreds of San Diego County businesses in limbo.

The county was placed on the state's monitoring list on July 5, following a busy Fourth of July weekend when crowds flocked to local shores as neighboring coastal communities shut down their beaches.

Businesses were given two days to prepare for closures. All indoor operations of restaurants, bars, movie theaters, zoos, museums, card rooms, wineries, tasting rooms and family entertainment centers were ordered to cease. Since then, businesses have gotten creative by taking their services outdoors.

More restaurants began to offer al fresco dining experiences, fitness centers have offered classes outdoors and the county approved a measure to allow churches and fitness-oriented businesses to offer their services in county parks.

In the most recent reporting on Monday, the county announced that the region’s 14-day average positivity rate fell to 4.2%, a positive sign since the target is less than 8%.

The total number of COVID-19 cases in the county as of Monday is 34,678, with 626 deaths reported since Feb. 14.

For the latest information on the coronavirus in San Diego County, click here.

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