Positive COVID-19 cases have dramatically declined in Alameda County from the peak of the pandemic’s spread in January but have seen a moderate rise since Governor Gavin Newsom lifted most COVID-19 related restrictions on June 15.
Data the county has gathered shows that, on an average day in January, about 673 residents tested positive for the virus. Since then, as vaccination has become increasingly widespread, average daily rates of positive cases have, in general, trended sharply downward. On an average day in February, about 239 people tested positive for the virus. This number decreased to about 94 daily positive cases in March before rising slightly to about 104 cases per day in April. Then the daily average sharply fell again, to about 57 cases per day in May, before slightly decreasing to about 47 average cases per day in June.
But recent data is showing that average daily cases have been increasing. During the 19 day period leading up to and including June 15, the average daily case rate was about 37. This number rose to about 58 cases per day during the 19 day period immediately following June 15, which is about a 57% increase. This increase comes directly after Newsom lifted restrictions that had previously required California citizens to physically distance, wear a mask while in indoor public spaces, and for businesses to enforce COVID-19 related capacity limits.
Public health officials are partly attributing the recent spread of COVID-19 to the more contagious Delta Variant of the virus, which recent data shows makes up about 35.6% of all cases in California. Vaccines still greatly reduce the chances of catching and spreading the Delta variant.
Shortly before Newsom lifted COVID-19 related restrictions, cases were at an all time low. During a 14 day period ending on June 8 there were 456 cases total, or about 33 per day. It was the lowest amount of cases over a 14 day period since the 14 day period ending on April 5 of last year.
Since June 15, the average percentage of COVID-19 tests taken in Alameda County that show positive results has also increased. Alameda county’s data shows that on June 14, the seven day average for positive test results was .9%. On July 4, the same data shows the seven day average for positive test results was 1.9%. On June 5, the seven day average for positive test results was just .6%, which was the lowest percentage of positive COVID-19 results since the county started tracking such data during March of last year.
While positive COVID-19 cases have risen, the number of people getting tested for the virus has decreased since June 15. The seven day average of COVID-19 tests given in Alameda County was 5,332 on June 15. On July 4, the seven day average of COVID-19 tests given was 4,745.
The amount of confirmed COVID-19 patients in Alameda County hospitals has also increased since June 15th. During the 19 day period leading up to and including June 15, there were about 33 confirmed COVID-19 patients in Alameda County hospitals on an average day. During the 19 days following June 15, those same hospitals had about 44 confirmed COVID-19 patients on an average day.
All information in this article related to COVID-19 in Alameda County came from the county’s COVID-19 data website, covid-10.acgov.gov, which is being continuously updated.
Note: A slightly different version of this story will appear soon in print in The Oakland Post, and online on the Post News Group’s website.