Good morning Mission! Welcome to Virus Village, your daily data dump.
You may have taken the weekend off, but the virus kept working. On Saturday, 141 new cases were reported, and on Sunday, there were 86 new cases. Today 103. Close to half the cases (48 percent) are people aged 18-40.
Over 800 healthcare workers in Santa Rosa are expected to go on strike today. Workers are protesting job cuts, lack of Personal Protective Equipment, cuts to paid time off, including sick leave, and health care costs to consumers more than doubling. Instead of stockpiling PPE, the private hospital, owned by Providence St. Joseph, has been stockpiling cash. Over the past three years, operating profits have risen to 201 million.
In San Francisco, the City expects private providers to ramp up testing, especially for “essential workers” beginning today. So far I don’t find an “order” or “directive” mandating such action.
The DPH average testing over the past week has dropped slightly to 3,189 per day for the week ending July 16. This number is still considered good by the Department, possibly because its goal is no more than 1,800 per day.
For the first time in the crisis, Covid hospitalizations hit the century mark. This number includes 11 transfers. More below.
And before we hit the numbers, if you thought the virus was our only epidemic, check out Julian Mark’s article on the current drug overdosing.
HiGeorge, a data visualization startup, developed some new visualizations for Mission Local, which we will be using and fine-tuning in the days to come.
Increased testing by private providers will enable DPH to focus on vulnerable populations, especially those without insurance. However testing itself is not enough. Controlling the virus depends on testing, tracing and quarantining. The lag time between testing and reporting makes tracing almost irrelevant. And DPH reports today that contact tracing can’t keep up with the current levels of testing. Over two weeks ending July 10, only 76 percent of positive cases, and 80 percent of named contacts, were reached. DPH claims to have a reserve of trained tracers, but it is unclear if they are using them.
Twenty new cases were reported from the Mission over the weekend, raising the number to 774.
47 of the 52 deaths recorded are people with one or more underlying health condition.
As of July 18, there were 34 patients in ICU (including 5 transfers) and 66 in Acute (including 6 transfers). Ten additional “suspected” covid patients are also in hospitals. The week ending July 18 saw an 34 percent increase in hospitalizations, well above the goal of 10 percent. SF hospitals report 397 ICU beds and 709 acute care beds available.
The current R number estimate is 1.39, a slight improvement from the weekend but nothing to cheer about. With this kind of number, we can expect cases (and hospitalizations) to keep increasing. For more information on the R number we use, go to Covid-19 R Estimation for California.