Jun 11, 2021
COVID-19 updates: Gov. Newsom expected to clarify reopening guidelines
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SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The COVID-19 pandemic is having a major impact across the world and also in cities across Northern California. The latest number of confirmed cases in the U.S. can be found at the CDC's 2019 Novel Coronavirus in the U.S. page. (The CDC updates the webpage on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.)
Join anchor Kristen Sze for ABC7's daily interactive newscast about the novel coronavirus outbreak in the Bay Area and other hot topics. You can check here to stream the show Monday-Friday at 3 p.m.
- GET HELP: Resources and information about COVID-19
- CA REOPENING TIERS: Map shows which counties can, can't reopen under Newsom's new 4-tier system
- LATEST LOCAL CASES: Updated number of COVID-19 cases, deaths in San Francisco Bay Area
Here are the latest developments on the respiratory illness in the U.S.:
June 11, 2021
Newsom expected to clarify reopening guidelines
Governor Gavin Newsom is expected to clarify the state's guidelines for reopening as California prepares to lift most restrictions next week. There has been some confusion about masks after CAL OSHA flip-flopped on its workplace rules.
June 9, 2021
Safeway to no longer require fully vaccinated shoppers to wear masks starting June 15
Safeway announced Wednesday that it will no longer require fully vaccinated shoppers to wear a mask as of June 15 unless state or local mandates require otherwise. A Safeway spokesperson said it will follow the guidelines as directed by Cal/OSHA upon the outcome of Thursday night's meeting.
RELATED: California makes major updates to mask mandate starting June 15
#BREAKING @Safeway just released its rules for post June 15. “After careful consideration of the updated CDC guidelines, as of June 15, we will no longer require face coverings for our customers who are fully vaccinated, unless state or local mandates require otherwise.” pic.twitter.com/w1fdLBBR4J— Laura Anthony (@LauraAnthony7) June 9, 2021
Delta variant on the rise
There's a new warning about the fast-spreading, highly infectious Delta variant. The variant, which helped fuel the devastating surge in India, is now the dominant strain in the United Kingdom. The Pfizer vaccine is shown to be 88% effective against the Delta variant after the second dose but only 33% effective after just one.
Folks, the Delta variant — a highly infectious COVID-19 strain — is spreading rapidly among young people between 12 and 20 years old in the U.K. If you’re young and haven’t gotten your shot yet, it really is time. It’s the best way to protect yourself and those you love.— President Biden (@POTUS) June 8, 2021
June 8, 2021
CDC study shows real world vaccine effectiveness
New research shows just how effective COVID vaccines are in the real world. The CDC found the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines cut the risk of infection by 91% two weeks after the second dose and more than 80% two weeks after the first dose.
June 4, 2021
Bay Area health officers urge in-person learning in fall
12 Bay Area health officers are urging all school districts to return to full in-person learning this fall. They appeared together in person for the first time in more than a year. The health officers say the risk of COVID transmission among children wearing masks in the classroom is very low.
June 3, 2021
San Mateo County Fair announces on-site vaccination clinic and incentive program
The San Mateo County Fair announced Thursday attendees who get their COVID-19 vaccine at the county fair will receive free admission, a $20 food voucher and four free carnival ride tickets. Each ticket is for a one-time ride use.
Starting Saturday, June 5, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines will be available outside the fair's main entrance at Gate 5 to everyone 16 years old and older, the county fair said.
The San Mateo County Public Health Department will administer the vaccines every day of the fair between 12:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
Vaccines are free and no appointments are required.
For more information and to purchase tickets to this year's fair, click here.
Newsom announces extension of emergency order permitting parklets for outdoor service
Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Thursday an extension of the emergency order which allows restaurant parklets for outdoor service. He made the announcement during a press conference in San Francisco with Mayor London Breed on how the state is supporting struggling restaurants and bars. California will also allow to-go cocktails after the economy fully reopens on June 15. Here's a link to the full story.
Newsom to focus on struggling restaurants
California Governor Gavin Newsom will be in the Bay Area today to focus attention on bars and restaurants struggling during the pandemic. The governor will speak at noon as California prepares to fully reopen the economy later this month. Last month, the governor proposed an additional $1.5 billion in aid to help restaurants and small businesses rebound.
June 1, 2021
Hamilton to return to SF in August
"Hamilton" is returning to San Francisco. The hit Broadway musical will have a month-long engagement at the Orpheum Theatre. Performances will begin on August 10 and go until September 5, 2021. The show will move to San Jose after that.
Moderna seeks full FDA approval for vaccine
Moderna is asking for full FDA approval for its COVID-19 vaccine. Health experts say this was an expected next step, now that the company has compiled six months of safety data. The move shows Moderna is confident that its vaccine is both effective enough and safe enough to meet the stringent FDA requirements. The review process will take several months. Moderna is the second vaccine company to seek full approval, following Pfizer last month.
May 30, 2021
California's 7-day positivity rate at 0.8%, health officials say
There were 1,079 newly recorded confirmed COVID-19 cases Saturday in California, state health officials announced Sunday.
As of Sunday, providers have reported administering a total of 37,437,314 vaccine doses statewide. The CDC reports that 46,298,020 doses have been delivered to entities within the state.
May 29, 2021
7-day CA positivity rate at 0.9%, more than 37M vaccine doses administered
There were 1,210 newly recorded confirmed cases Friday, according to the California Department of Public Health. The 7-day positivity rate is 0.9%.
California has 3,683,309 confirmed cases to date.
As of May 29, providers have reported administering a total of 37,296,257 vaccine doses statewide. The CDC reports that 46,298,020 doses have been delivered to entities within the state.
May 26, 2021
VTA and SF ferries increasing capacity
Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority in the South Bay and ferries in San Francisco will increase passenger capacity. Both agencies are reducing social distancing requirements from six feet to three feet. Masks are still required.
May 25, 2021
Foster Farms fined by California safety agency
California's workplace safety agency has fined Foster Farms more than $180,000 for failing to protect workers from COVID. Nearly 400 workers at the Livingston facilities have tested positive for COVID-19 since last fall. At least 9 have died. The fine is one of the steepest issued during the pandemic.
May 24, 2021
SF's largest hotel reopens today
San Francisco's largest hotel is reopening today. Hilton's Union Square Hotel on O'Farrell has been closed for more than 14-months. The 2,000-room hotel will open just one of its three towers to start out.
May 22, 2021
1 million fully vaccinated in Santa Clara County, health officials say
Santa Clara County health officials say the county hit a new milestone this week: one million people are fully vaccinated in the county.
As of May 21, 73 percent of residents age 12 and older have had at least one dose of vaccine, while almost 60 percent have completed the vaccination process, the county reported.
"The vaccines are winning the fight, and the reason they're winning is because they have an essential ally in everybody who is stepping up to get vaccinated," said Dr. Marty Fenstersheib, COVID-19 Testing and Vaccine Officer for the County of Santa Clara. "COVID-19's greatest and toughest enemy is a vaccinated community."
May 21, 2021
2021 Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival, 4th of July parade canceled; pumpkin weigh-off still on
For the second consecutive year, the 2021 Art & Pumpkin Festival and the 4th of July Parade in Half Moon Bay have been canceled, the board of directors announced on Friday.
"With the ongoing COVID-related health and safety restrictions and limits on event attendance capacity and no clear forward guidance or timetable from the State or County on when attendance restrictions will be fully lifted, as well as the many critical months of intensive planning and significant upfront investment and expense required to bring all the moving parts together, it simply adds up to an impossible and impractical equation for ungated events," said Cameron Palmer, Chairman of the Half Moon Bay Beautification Committee.
However, the committee says the Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off will go on as scheduled this year, Monday, October 11.
May 21, 2021
Levi stadium returning to full capacity in upcoming season, 49ers says
Levi's Stadium will return to full capacity this upcoming football season, 49ers President Al Guido said in a tweet on Friday.
"This moment has been a long time coming," he wrote.
This moment has been a long time coming! #49ers #FTTB pic.twitter.com/I2jGfAZMT2— Al Guido (@AlGuido) May 21, 2021
Barring changes to guidance, #LevisStadium will be back to full capacity for the 21-22 season! Thank you to the healthcare workers, public officials & all leading the CA vax campaign for making this possible.
More to come... In the meantime, we will remain CA’s biggest vax site! https://t.co/HTRNsg4UZb
Santa Clara Co. giving away boba at vaccine sites
Santa Clara County is giving away free boba at vaccination clinics. There are two drop-in events today for anyone 12 and up. They are at Wilcox High School in Santa Clara from 12:30 to 7:30 p.m. There's also an event at Gilroy high school from 2 to 4:30.
May 20, 2021
No COVID-19 patients at SF General
Dr. Vivek Jain called Thursday a "truly momentous day at San Francisco General Hospital." For the first time since March 5, 2020, the hospital has no COVID-19 patients, he tweeted. He acknowledged the feat likely won't last long -- the hospital will likely treat people with COVID-19 in the coming weeks and months. Still, the occasion marks a major milestone for the city, which has been seeing coronavirus cases drop for weeks as vaccinations continue to climb.
San Francisco loosens dozens of COVID-19 restrictions
San Francisco, arguably the state's most careful county when it comes to reopening amid COVID-19, is loosening the reins and preparing for a return to normal this summer. The city and county announced dozens of minor and meaningful changes to its health order, allowing more flexibility for businesses and residents. We break down the new rules, sector by sector, here.
SF Health Department releases rules for proms
San Francisco's Health Department has released guidelines for this year's high school proms -- that are going to be anything but traditional. Prom-goers who aren't vaccinated will have to stay 6 feet away from others. Anyone at an indoor event will have to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test. They will also have to don a face mask along with their dress or tuxedo. And no close dancing will be allowed. Attendees are banned from dancing cheek to cheek or clutching their date during a slow song.
May 19, 2021
Hospitals may be overcounting child cases, study finds
Hospitals may be overcounting the number of kids being hospitalized for COVID-19 in the U.S., according to a new study from Stanford. Researchers analyzed data from Lucile Packard Children's Hospital. They found 117 child patients either tested positive or were hospitalized for multisystem inflammatory syndrome, but 40% of those cases were asymptomatic. And 45% of those admissions were found to be unlikely to be caused by the virus.
May 18, 2021
1 more Bay Area county joins yellow tier
Santa Clara County has officially joined San Francisco and San Mateo counties in the yellow reopening tier. See what is allowed to reopen here.
SF Giants loosen COVID-19 rules for fans in socially distanced sections
Starting Friday, May 21, Giants fans seated in socially distanced sections will not required to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test or vaccination for entry into Oracle Park. Fans sitting in fully vaccinated sections will still be required to show proof they're fully vaccinated.
Vaccine clinics opening at Contra Costa Co. schools
Vaccine clinics will begin opening at Contra Costa County schools today. It's an effort to increase vaccinations among students now that eligibility has expanded. Antioch Middle School and Concord High School will host free clinics starting this morning. They will be open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. until Saturday. Next week, sites will open at Pinole Valley High, Pittsburg High, Ygnacio Valley High in Concord and Edna Hill Middle in Brentwood. Anyone eligible for a vaccine can go to the sites.
May 17, 2021
Calif. to begin following the new CDC indoor mask guidelines starting June 15
California health officials announced Monday that the state would begin following the Centers for Disease Control's eased mask guidelines for some indoor settings starting June 15.
CDC recommends masks stay on at schools
The CDC says masks should stay on at school, at least for the rest of the school year. The agency reasons that most younger children aren't vaccinated -- and may not be eligible until the fall. While the CDC says children who get infected tend to have less severe cases of COVID-19, they can still get sick and spread the virus to others. The CDC will update its guidance for the next school year "in coming weeks" to give educators time to plan.
May 16, 2021
California records 1,370 new cases, 7-day positivity rate at 1%
California recorded 1,370 new COVID-19 cases and 55 deaths on Saturday, with a 7-day positivity rate at 1%, according to state health officials Sunday.
1,402 remain hospitalized with 362 in the ICU.
May 15, 2021
Nearly 2,000 new cases in CA, 7-day positivity rate is 1.1%
There are 1,864 new cases in the state, according to the California Department of Public Health. The 7-day positivity rate is 1.1%.
New cases: 1,864
7-Day Positivity Rate: 1.1%
346 in ICU
Vaccinations: 15,362,144 Fully Vaccinated (48.3%)
4,837,852 Partially vaccinated
246,391 average doses administered per day
32 Days of inventory on hand
May 14, 2021
More than 15M people fully vaccinated in CA
A vaccination milestone in California. As of Friday, 15,110,057 people are fully vaccinated in the state, according to the California Department of Public Health. The state positivity rate remains at 1.1%.
Here are other vaccinated numbers:
-4,931,344 partially vaccinated
-27 Days of inventory
-257,569 average doses administered per day
Here are the latest COVID-19 numbers in CA:
-New Cases: 2,034
-Total Cases: 3,661,675
-3.5 cases per 100,000
Total Deaths: 61,417
In ICU: 359
May 13, 2021
US unemployment claims drop to new pandemic low
The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell last week to 473,000, a new pandemic low and the latest evidence that fewer employers are cutting jobs as consumers ramp up spending and more businesses reopen.
May 12, 2021
California's Department of Public Health (CDHP) officially recommends the COVID-19 vaccine for people 12+
After FDA and CDC authorization and endorsement of the Pfizer vaccine in 12-15 year-olds, California's Department of Public Health is officially recommending the COVID-19 vaccine for people 12-years-old and up.
Santa Clara Co. opens up vaccine appointments to 12-to-15-year-old kids
Santa Clara County officials announced Wednesday evening that vaccine appointees for children 12 and up are available effective immediately. Appointments can be scheduled now through the county's website, which also includes information about numerous drop-in vaccination sites throughout the county.
Panel suggests WHO should have more power to stop pandemics
A panel of independent experts who reviewed the World Health Organization's response to the coronavirus pandemic says the U.N. health agency should be granted "guaranteed rights of access" in countries to investigate emerging outbreaks, a contentious idea that would give it more powers and require member states to give up some of theirs.
May 11, 2021
San Mateo Co. joins yellow tier
San Mateo County has officially joined San Francisco in the least restrictive yellow tier. This means nearly all businesses could open indoors with physical distancing and face covering requirements.
LA County could reach herd immunity in July
Once the epicenter for COVID cases, health officials say Los Angeles County could reach herd immunity by the end of July. California's 7-Day Positivity Rate has dropped to a record low 1%.
May 10, 2021
San Mateo Co. to move into yellow tier Tuesday, official says
San Mateo County will move into the less restrictive yellow tier on Tuesday, according to San Mateo County Board of Supervisors President David Canepa. Some of the biggest changes that can happen in the yellow tier include increasing indoor capacity at wineries, breweries and distilleries to 50% or 200 people, whichever number is fewer. Gyms can increase capacity from 25% to 50%. They can also reopen saunas, spas and steam rooms.
California's 7-day positivity rate at record low 1%
California's 7-day COVID-19 positivity rate is 1%, according to new data released by state health officials Monday. That is the record lowest number since the pandemic began. There were 1,377 newly recorded confirmed cases Sunday, adding to a total of 3,655,922 confirmed cases to date.
More than 14 million or 45.1% of residents are fully vaccinated in California, with a average of 267,310 doses administered per day.
32 million Californians have received at least 1 shot
The Department of Public Health reported 1,800 new cases Sunday and 61 deaths in California. More than 32 million Californians have received at least one shot and 45% of the population over the age of 16 is fully vaccinated.
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News Source: abc7news.com
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Many Californians keep masks on as economy reopens, saying better safe than sorry
Despite Tuesday’s massive reopening of the California economy and the loosening of COVID-19 rules that have been in place for more than a year, many people continued to wear masks in public, saying they felt it was better to be safe than sorry.
At Charlie’s Best Burgers in East Los Angeles, patrons and the staff treated California’s reopening day like any other.
“Right now, there are just too many unvaccinated people to not ask our customers to wear masks,” said restaurant general manager Jorge Jimenez, 35. “If you look at the area, it’s been hit hard by COVID-19. It doesn’t make sense right now to change.”
According to county records, more than 25,000 COVID-19 cases have been reported in East L.A., along with 432 deaths. That breakdown includes Boyle Heights (17,535 cases and 304 deaths), Lincoln Heights (15,722 cases and 162 deaths) and El Sereno (14,945 cases and 110 deaths).
“We’re not able to tell who is vaccinated and who is not, so this is the best thing to do,” Jimenez said.
When his restaurant first implemented a mask mandate last spring, Jimenez said several customers refused and left. Since then, however, the community has generally accepted the protocol.
There were no complaints from customers Tuesday.
California reopening: Why officials say it’s safer this time around
California reopening: Why officials say it’s safer this time around
Tuesday is not the first time California has tried to reopen its economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. But officials are hopeful it will be the last.
Friends Albert Ramon, Kenneth Ruiz and Yerson Henriquez, all 19, had pulled down their surgical and cloth masks as they dined on burger, fries, pancakes and a chorizo burrito.
“Honestly, I still think it’s way too early,” Ramon said of lifting the mask mandate. “I was surprised that the change was made.”
Part of what has made Charlie’s Best Burger appealing, Henriquez said, is that the restaurant still enforces a mask mandate.
“It’s just weird to walk around and see people without masks because we still need to get vaccination numbers up,” he said.
Other businesses along South Atlantic Boulevard — La Raza Market, Basket Burger Café and Mi Cabaña Restaurant — were also asking patrons to continue wearing masks.
Still, Ruiz said it was “refreshing” not to have to wear a mask all the time and looks forward to a maskless California.
California reopens to joy, celebrations: ‘It’s one of the best days of my life’
California reopens to joy, celebrations: ‘It’s one of the best days of my life’
As of Tuesday, restrictions are lifted at most businesses, and Californians fully vaccinated for COVID-19 can go without masks in most settings.
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In Long Beach, Christopher Hudak read the new sign taped outside of CoffeeDrunk: “Your safety is important to us. Masks are recommended.”
The 24-year-old kept his on as he walked inside and ordered his usual iced coffee.
Despite the new state rules that drop mask requirements for vaccinated customers in most situations, Hudak said he didn’t plan to leave his face covering behind anytime soon.
“I’m still used to it,” he said as he sat inside the shop. “Right now, it’s mainly a habit.”
Realizing he had forgotten his mask before entering a Whole Foods in West Hollywood, Adam Cyril asked a clerk if the store could give him one.
The employee replied, much to Cyril’s surprise, that he didn’t need one.
“It felt like I was restored as a human being again, and I got some rights back.” said Cyril, who was sporting a Sublime shirt and sunglasses with diamond-shaped lenses.
The 27-year-old found only one other woman — a “brave lady” — shopping inside while barefaced. It felt novel and commonplace at the same time, he said, adding that he almost snapped a selfie of him among the sea of masked patrons.
“It actually felt like, ‘Boom, am I in a time vortex? Did I just go back in time?’” he said. “I didn’t realize what was going on.”
For the past year, the Manhattan Beach resident has commuted almost daily to his construction job near the upscale market on Fairfax Avenue and Sunset Boulevard. It’s been hard for him to drive for such long periods wearing a mask, which he said irritates his nose and has caused acne breakouts on his face.
Knowing he can retire the face covering in most places was a relief, he said.