Garden Party. Photo by Mark Rabine

Good Morning Mission. Welcome to Virus Village, your daily data dump.

The Atlantic has a new piece on contact tracing, called “The Most American Covid-19 Failure Yet”. It’s well worth reading.  The author cites three main issues: 1) too many cases to track, 2) testing takes too long, and 3) “Many Americans fear and distrust government”, an ideological issue for some, while for many others, the stakes are considerably higher.

As if in response, Mayor Breed was in the Mission yesterday, talking with residents, and distributing masks and hand sanitizer to small businesses which have been pushed to the brink of survival.

Meanwhile, returning to work with the virus still out of control can add to the stress of coping.

Scroll down for today’s numbers.

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. 

Only 6 cases were added to the Mission’s cumulative total of 1276 as of August 29. Cynically I have assumed that recent weeks of low numbers reflects inadequate testing and reporting. But it may also reflect the education and contact tracing taken on by the Latino Task Force in coordination with UCSF and the City. People who distrust or fear government, often respond when community groups, local media and educators get involved with clear coherent messaging. It seems to have worked in Chinatown, where, despite dense living conditions and a relatively vulnerable population, there have only been 47 cases reported — one of the lowest numbers in the City.

The seven-day average number of daily cases, as of August 25, remained below 80.

Most models, with a couple outliers, show local virus transmission continuing to be slow and stable.

DPH now reports 124 ICU beds and 524 Acute Care beds available, which is good news if there is a spike in the fall.

57 percent of all cases have been contracted via “community contact” , a term DPH does not define, but probably means could not be traced.

Mark Rabine

Mark Rabine has lived in the Mission for over 40 years. "What a long strange trip it's been."

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