STOCKTON, Calif. — San Joaquin County's top health official warned Thursday that masks and social distancing are not happening enough.
"We are fifth in the state as far as case counts right now per 100,000 population so we've got a high rate of covid right now," San Joaquin County Public Health Officer Dr. Maggie Park said.
The county has had 6,065 confirmed cases, that's up from just over 1,300 cases in a month.
As of Thursday, 67 coronavirus patients in the county have died.
Dr. Park said there could be 263 deaths by August 5th.
"That is a forecast model that is given to us by the state of California," Dr. Park said. "So, it's an average of different modelers that the state uses, different data scientists. So, some are predicting more and some are predicting less."
LIVE DATA: San Joaquin County Coronavirus Dashboard:
Hospitalizations are soaring as well.
202 coronavirus patients are hospitalized in the county's seven hospitals now compared to less than ten nearly three weeks ago on May 20th.
"Hospitals in totality still have beds, but the ICU'S are quite full or they're getting full in most of our hospitals," said Dr. Park.
The recent outbreaks are attributed to house parties and funerals, Dr. Park said.
If people don't get serious again about the pandemic, reopening's could be put in reverse, Dr. Park said.
"Unfortunately, that's going to have to be the case. I don't know that the closures that the governor initiated on July the first are going to be enough to actually reverse our numbers significantly. I really hope so," Dr. Park said.
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According to the CDC, coronavirus (COVID-19) is a family of viruses that is spreadable from person to person. Coronavirus is believed to have been first detected in a seafood market in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. If someone is sick with coronavirus, the symptoms they may show include mild to severe respiratory illness, cough, and difficulty breathing.
Currently, there is no vaccine; however, the CDC suggests the following precautions, along with any other respiratory illness:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds.
WHY HEALTH OFFICIALS ARE SO CONCERNED
Some people have compared the low overall death toll to the flu's high annual death toll in the United States as a reason not to be concerned about COVID-19, however, doctors and health officials are concerned for three main reasons:
- There's no vaccine yet and won't be one for until early 2021, at the soonest. Scientists are still researching what other medications could help patients.
- Some people have built up immunity to the flu, but few have immunity to COVID-19 version of coronavirus.
- Both the flu and COVID-19 are spread by droplets, but COVID-19 might be spread in the air. Scientists are researching exactly how COVID-19 spreads
WATCH MORE: Sacramento coronavirus spike | Q&A with Sacramento County's Public Health Director