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COVID-19 update: Over 500 new cases added in last seven days 

daily new cases

Case average at highest since February

–San Luis Obispo County has added over 500 new cases of COVID-19 in the past 7 days, according to data from the San Luis Obispo County Health Department.

Locally, all cases sequenced in the past week were of the highly-contagious Delta variant, according to the public health department. This finding is consistent with statewide data showing more than 90-percent of all strains identified were Delta in the month of July. Because this variant spreads more easily, rapidly infecting larger numbers of people, officials say it results in more people becoming severely ill.

As cases of COVID-19 increase significantly and the highly contagious Delta variant takes hold locally, the public health department strongly recommends that everyone, regardless of vaccination status, wears a mask indoors in public places.

“The Delta variant is sweeping quickly through our community and we need every tool we have to stop it,” said County of San Luis Obispo Health Officer Dr. Penny Borenstein. “While vaccines remain our best tool against COVID-19, masking in indoor and crowded outdoor settings will help us curb the spread of this latest wave of infection.”

Last week, the CDC once again issued a recommendation that all people indoors or in close proximity with each other wear masks, regardless of vaccination status. They recently published a study that found no significant difference in the viral load present in the breakthrough infections occurring in fully vaccinated people and the other cases, suggesting the viral load of vaccinated and unvaccinated persons infected with the coronavirus is similar, according to a July 30 story by NPR. The county health department has not returned questions regarding the transmissibility of the Delta variant among vaccinated people.

Following CDC’s recent recommendation, the Public Health Department is offering third-dose Pfizer and Moderna appointments for those with certain conditions that compromise the immune system. New data shows a third dose of mRNA vaccines helps increase vaccine effectiveness for those who have these conditions.

To view more detailed COVID-19 data for San Luis Obispo County, click here. 

For updates on COVID-19 in SLO County, visit ReadySLO.org or call the recorded Public Health Information Line at (805) 788-2903. Phone assistance is available at (805) 781-5500 Monday – Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information on COVID-19 vaccine, visit www.RecoverSLO.org/Vaccine.   

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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at info@pasoroblesdailynews.com.