Bar Goers and Younger People

The County Public Health Department reported 59 new COVID-19 cases over the weekend and Monday (June 27-29) in all regions of SLO County. Public Health investigations found the largest increase in cases is attributed to community spread, including cases among people who reported going to bars.

“If our current and future local actions — supported by residents, businesses and visitors — don’t produce the necessary results, the matter may be taken out of our hands,” wrote District 2 Supervisor Bruce Gibson on social media. “If these metrics increase much further, we could see SLO County put on the state’s watch list. Over the weekend, seven counties on the watch list received state orders to close bars and eight were recommended to do so — and I understand four more counties were added to the watch list today.”

The previous COVID-19 report was Friday, June 26 when 19 people tested positive.
“Please continue to do your part to limit the spread of COVID-19 in SLO County,” said Dr. Penny Borenstein

County Health Officer. “Let’s work together to protect our economy and our community. Neighboring counties have had to recently close bars and other sectors because their cases are increasing so rapidly. We do not want to have to do that here and we need your help.”

Officials noted that, consistent with state and national trends, the new cases include many younger people. Thirty-seven of the 59 new cases are age 18 to 49. Four of the 14 local cases in the hospital, including one in the ICU, are patients in their 30s or 40s.

“We’ve heard a misconception that this disease doesn’t affect young people and that is simply not true,” said Dr. Borenstein. “While the risk increases with age, younger adults in our community are still at risk. Stay home if you’re sick, avoid large gatherings, stay six-feet away from others in public, and wear a face covering in public if you can.”

Gibson added, “This is serious. If you are in that age range, I urge you to think carefully about your responsibility to protect yourself and your community. If you have friends and family in that age range, let them know how important this is.”

San Luis Obispo County has had 567 confirmed COVID-19 cases to date. Out of 21,611 tests conducted, the SLO Public Health Lab confirmed 129 and private-industry labs confirmed 438.

SLO County continues to meet criteria set by the State of California to show stability, and local cases remain lower than in neighboring counties. For example, Santa Barbara County has had a total of 2,712 cases, and Kern County has had 4,548 confirmed cases. The County now (June 29) has 162 active cases, with 148 recovering at home and 14 hospitalized (6 in ICU). There has been one coronavirus related death in SLO County.

For updates on COVID-19 in SLO County and to see the full text of these orders, visit ReadySLO.org. A staffed phone assistance center at (805) 543-2444 is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist with questions related to COVID-19.