San Diego COVID-19 update as of Tues., Jan. 11

Photo by Anna Shvets via Pexels

As we enter 2022, events are being canceled, COVID-19 testing sites are becoming overwhelmed, and schools are returning to more cautious protocols. The COVID-19 situation is dynamic, but here’s a snapshot of where San Diego stands.

San Diego County updates

Last Friday, San Diego County health officials released a statement urging residents to get vaccinated and boosted + seek testing for COVID-19 if they felt ill. The county reported 12,563 new cases on Sun., Jan. 9; 17,507 new cases for Sat., Jan. 8; and a record 19,009 new cases for Fri., Jan. 7.

The state-implemented indoor mask mandate that went into place on Dec. 15, is still in effect. This mandate requires face coverings to be worn in all indoor public settings, regardless of vaccination status

COVID-19 testing

San Diego County has 12+ no-cost testing sites. On Sun., Jan. 8, the state announced that it will be deploying National Guard members to six of those testing sites to aid in various medical, personnel, and administrative tasks. They are expected to arrive in the coming days.

There are various COVID-19 testing options at local pharmacies + health centers, as well as at-home tests. Due to the high demand for tests, the FTC issued a warning about fake at-home testing kits being sold online. They recommend making sure the testing kit is FDA approved before purchasing. 

New guidance for healthcare workers

California has issued new guidance for healthcare workers due to staffing shortages. The guidance states that healthcare workers who have been exposed to COVID-19 and are asymptomatic can return to work immediately without quarantining and testing. Similarly, healthcare workers who test positive for COVID-19 and are asymptomatic can return to work without isolation and testing. 

The state’s guidance also said local health officials have the option implement more protective procedures — at this point in time the San Diego health department has not.

New guidance for “mega events”

California has redefined its COVID-19 requirements for mega events that will go into effect on Sat., Jan. 15. The guidance now defines an indoor event with 500+ people to be considered a mega event — previously 1,000+ — and requires all attendees to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test.

Outdoor events — like the upcoming Farmer’s Insurance Open at Torrey Pines Golf Course — with 5,000+ people are considered mega and the state recommends venues require attendees to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. Read more about the requirements here.