700 SDSU students test positive for COVID-19, threatening the entire county’s progress for reopening

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San Diego is on track to become the first county in California to go backwards in terms of fighting COVID-19. Photo by Joe Mabel/CC BY 3.0

For months, San Diego County had the lowest COVID-19 case rate in Southern California. Now it’s backsliding. The case rate has gone up, thanks in part to nearly 700 positive cases among students at San Diego State University. The county had a red designation in Gov. Gavin Newsom’s color-coded tier system for reopening. Now it’s in danger of falling into the purple tier, which is the worst tier.

Paul Sisson, health care reporter with the San Diego Union Tribune, predicts what would happen if SD County becomes purple. “At the moment, restaurants are allowed to use 25% of their indoor seating capacity. They would lose that ability if we fell back to the purple tier, and would have to move their entire operations back outdoors again. Same deal with churches and other places of worship. Same with movie theaters, museums, gyms. Indoor retail is currently allowed to use 50% of their capacity — that would drop to 25%. There are some real capacities that could be lost here if this happens.”

Credits

Guest:
Paul Sisson - health care reporter with San Diego Union Tribune

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Amy Ta, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Caleigh Wells, Angie Perrin