Tag Archives: Coronavirus COVID 19

Solano reports 56 new COVID-19 cases overnight, no new deaths

By Roger Straw, Friday, February 26, 2021

COVID spread has slowed some, but it’s still spreading and dangerous in Solano County – stay safe!

Friday, February 26: 56 new Solano cases overnight, no new deaths.  Since February 2020: 30,024 cases, over 890 hospitalized, 164 deaths.Compare previous report, Thursday, February 25:Summary

[See Sources.  Daily archive of BenIndy Solano updates: Excel ARCHIVE
    • CASES – Solano County reported 56 new cases overnight, a total of 30,024 cases since the outbreak started.
    • DEATHS – the County reported no new deaths today .  A total of 164 Solano residents have died with COVID since the pandemic began.  42 COVID deaths were reported here in Solano County just since February 1.  COMPARE: In the month of January, Solano recorded a total of 24 coronavirus deaths.  Combining the two months to date, a total of 66 deaths, or 40% of Solano’s 164 COVID deaths occurred since January 1!  While many other COVID stats are improving, the recent surge in deaths is no doubt the final sad result of our holiday surge.  And we may see another surge in cases and deaths following the Super Bowl.
    • ACTIVE cases – Solano reported 37 fewer active cases today, a total of 298 active casesCompare: Solano’s average number of Active Cases during October was 284, average in November was 650, in December 1,658, in January 2,185 – and TODAY we are at 298.  Much better, but still, is the County equipped to contact trace all these infected persons?  My guess is we just sit back and wait for a voluntary 10 day quarantine to expire.  Who knows?  To my knowledge, Solano has offered no reports on contact tracing.
    • HOSPITALIZATIONS – (See expanding ICU capacity and ventilator availability below.)  Today, Solano reported 8 fewer currently hospitalized cases, total of 37.  Among the age groups, the County has reported no new hospitalizations today, a total of 892 hospitalized in all age groups since the pandemic began.  Accuracy of the County’s hospitalization numbers cannot be certain.  [For the numbers used in my manual calculation of total hospitalizations, see age group stats belowFor COVID19-CA.GOV numbers, see BenIndy page, COVID-19 Hospitalizations Daily Update for Solano County.]
    • ICU BEDS – In late January, Solano hospitals expanded their ICU capacity [see BenIndy, Jan. 25]  Even with the expanded ICU capacity, Solano County has fallen in and out of the YELLOW DANGER ZONE, and came in at 37% available today up from 29% yesterday. California’s COVID19-CA.GOV reports that Solano County had only 7 available ICU beds yesterday, February 24, (down from 13 the day before).  (For COVID19-CA.GOV info see BenIndy page, COVID-19 Hospitalizations Daily Update for Solano County, and for REGIONAL data see COVID-19 ICU Bed Availability by REGION.)
    • VENTILATORS available – Today Solano hospitals have 54% of ventilators available, down from 58% yesterday, and down substantially from last summer’s reports of 82-94% available.
Positive Test Rate: 5.6% – still no clarification as to Tuesday’s sudden drop by over half!

Solano County reported on Tuesday that our 7-day average positive test was cut by more than half overnight, down to 5.9% from 12.4% on Monday.  Today the County remained in the same range, falling from yesterday’s 5.7% to 5.6%.  It seems totally unlikely for a 7-day average to drop so precipitously overnight.  I’ll let you know if I get an explanation.  Currently, Solano has come in under the State’s purple/red tier threshold of 8%.  Even so, DON’T EXPECT A QUICK MOVE DOWN TO THE RED TIER: the State requires a county to meet criteria for the next less restrictive tier (in test rate measures AND case rate measures) for the prior two consecutive weeks in order to progress to the next tier.  The much lower and more stable California 7-day average test rate was at 2.7% today, down from 2.9% yesterday(Note that Solano County displays past weeks and months in a 7-day test positivity line graph which also shows daily results.  However, the chart does not display an accurate number of cases for the most recent days, as there is a lag time in receiving test results.  The 7-day curve therefore also lags behind due to unknown recent test results.) 

By Age Group
  • Youth 17 and under – 4 new cases overnight, total of 3,503 cases, representing 11.7% of the 30,024 total cases.  No new hospitalizations were reported today among this age group, total of 18 since the outbreak began.  Thankfully, no deaths have ever been reported in Solano County in this age groupBut cases among Solano youth rose steadily over the summer, from 5.6% of total cases on June 8 to 11% on August 31 and has remained at over 11% since September 30.  Youth are 22% of Solano’s general population, so this 11% may seem low.  The significance is this: youth are SERIOUSLY NOT IMMUNE (!) – in fact at least 18 of our youth have been hospitalized since the outbreak began.
  • Persons 18-49 years of age – 10 new cases overnight, total of 16,529 cases. This age group is 41% of the population in Solano, but represents 55.2% of the total cases, by far the highest percentage of all age groups.  The County reported no new hospitalizations among persons in this age group today.  A total of 246 are reported to have been hospitalized since the outbreak began.  Solano recorded no new deaths in this young group today, total of 10 deaths.  Some in this group are surely at high risk, as many are providing essential services among us, and some may be ignoring public health orders.  I expect this group is a major factor in the spread of the virus.
  • Persons 50-64 years of age – 11 new cases overnight, total of 6,272 cases.  This age group represents 20.9% of the 30,024 total cases.  The County reported no new hospitalizations among persons in this age group today, a total of 240 reported to have been hospitalized since the outbreak began.  No new deaths were reported in this age group today, a total of 26 deaths.
  • Persons 65 years or older – only 5 new cases overnight, total of 3,673, representing 12.2% of Solano’s 30,024 total cases.  The County reported no new hospitalizations among persons in this age group today, a total of 388 hospitalized since the outbreak began.  No new deaths were  reported in this age group today.  A total of 128 of our elders have died of COVID, accounting for 78% of Solano’s 164 total deaths.
City Data
  • Benicia added 3 new cases overnight, total of 851 cases since the outbreak began.
  • Dixon added 4 new cases overnight, total of 1,755 cases.
  • Fairfield added 19 new cases overnight, total of 8,167 cases.
  • Rio Vista added 3 new cases overnight, total of 323 cases.
  • Suisun City added 4 new cases overnight, total of 2,033 cases.
  • Vacaville added 11 new cases overnight, total of 7,897 cases.
  • Vallejo added 12 new cases overnight, total of 8,910 cases.
  • Unincorporated areas remained steady today, total of 88 cases.
Race / Ethnicity

The County report on race / ethnicity includes case numbers, hospitalizations, deaths and Solano population statistics.  This information is discouragingly similar to national reports that indicate significantly worse outcomes among black and brown Americans.  Note that all of this data surely undercounts Latinx Americans, as there is a large group of “Multirace / Others” which likely is composed mostly of Latinx members of our communities.

  • Asian Americans are 14% of Solano’s population, and account for 12% of cases, 13% of hospitalizations, and 18% of deaths.
  • Black Americans are 14% of Solano’s population, and account for 11% of cases, but 17% of hospitalizations, and 19% of deaths.
  • Latinx Americans are 26% of Solano’s population, but account for 16% of cases, 21% of hospitalizations, and 12% of deaths.
  • Multi-race / Others are 7% of Solano’s population, but account for 33% of cases, 19% of hospitalizations, and 16% of deaths.
  • White Americans are 39% of the population in Solano County, but only account for 28% of cases, 31% of hospitalizations and 34% of deaths.

More…

The County’s Coronavirus Dashboard is full of much more information, too extensive to cover here on a daily basis.  The Benicia Independent will continue to summarize daily and highlight significant portions.  For more, check out the Dashboard at https://doitgis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=055f81e9fe154da5860257e3f2489d67.

Source
Source: Solano County Coronavirus Dashboard (posted on the County website late today).  ALSO see important daily updates from the state of California at COVID19.CA.GOV, embedded here on the BenIndy at Cases and Deaths AND Hospitalizations AND ICU Beds by REGION.

Appointments available! COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Saturday, Solano Fairgrounds, Vallejo

From Nextdoor Benicia, City of Benicia, Communications, Teri Davena February 26, 2020 just before noon

COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Saturday.  Appointment slots are still available for tomorrow’s vaccination clinic at the Solano County Fairgrounds! Saturday, Feb 27, 2021 Solano County Fairgrounds Expo Hall 900 Fairgrounds Dr, Vallejo, CA To sign up & see eligibility: www.bit.ly/sccovax0227 or call 707-784-8655 for scheduling assistance.

May be an image of 1 person and text that says 'COVID-19 VACCINE CLINIC Saturday, February 27 2021, By Appointment Only Solano County Fairgrounds Expo Hall Available to Solano County Residents eligible in current distribution tiers including Older Adults (65-74 with underlying medical conditions and 75+), Healthcare Workers, and First Responders TO SIGN UP: www.bit.ly/ sccovax 0227 OR CALL: 707-784-8655 TGETHER SOLANO PUBLIC WE CAN HEALTH'

Solano County reports 14 previously unreported COVID hospitalizations


By Roger Straw, Thursday, February 25, 2021

COVID spread has slowed some, but it’s still spreading and dangerous in Solano County – stay safe!

Thursday, February 25: 43 new Solano cases overnight, no new deaths.  Since February 2020: 29,968 cases, over 890 hospitalized, 164 deaths.Compare previous report, Wednesday, February 24:Summary

[See Sources.  Daily archive of BenIndy Solano updates: Excel ARCHIVE
    • CASES – Solano County reported 43 new cases overnight, a total of 29,968 cases since the outbreak started.
    • DEATHS – the County reported no new deaths today .  A total of 164 Solano residents have died with COVID since the pandemic began.  42 COVID deaths were reported here in Solano County just since February 1.  COMPARE: In the month of January, Solano recorded a total of 24 coronavirus deaths.  Combining the two months to date, a total of 66 deaths, or 40% of Solano’s 164 COVID deaths occurred since January 1!  While many other COVID stats are improving, the recent surge in deaths is no doubt the final sad result of our holiday surge.  And we may see another surge in cases and deaths following the Super Bowl.
    • ACTIVE cases – Solano reported 17 more active cases today a total of 335 active casesCompare: Solano’s average number of Active Cases during October was 284, average in November was 650, in December 1,658, in January 2,185 – and TODAY we are at 335.  Much better, but still, is the County equipped to contact trace all these infected persons?  My guess is we just sit back and wait for a voluntary 10 day quarantine to expire.  Who knows?  To my knowledge, Solano has offered no reports on contact tracing.
    • HOSPITALIZATIONS – (See expanding ICU capacity and ventilator availability below.)  Today, Solano reported no change in the number of currently hospitalized cases, total of 45.  However, the County executed its occasional “catch-up” of hospitalizations previously unreported, adding 14 new hospitalizations among the age groups, a total of 892 hospitalized in all age groups since the pandemic began.  Today’s report added 1 person aged 18-49, 6 persons aged 50-64, and 7 of us over 65.  Accuracy of the County’s hospitalization numbers cannot be certain.  [For the numbers used in my manual calculation of total hospitalizations, see age group stats belowFor COVID19-CA.GOV numbers, see BenIndy page, COVID-19 Hospitalizations Daily Update for Solano County.]
    • ICU BEDS – In late January, Solano hospitals expanded their ICU capacity [see BenIndy, Jan. 25]  Even with the expanded ICU capacity, Solano County has fallen back into the YELLOW DANGER ZONE at  29% available same as yesterday. The State’s COVID19-CA.GOV reports that Solano County had only 13 available ICU beds yesterday, February 24, (down from 18 the day before).  (For COVID19-CA.GOV info see BenIndy page, COVID-19 Hospitalizations Daily Update for Solano County, and for REGIONAL data see COVID-19 ICU Bed Availability by REGION.)
    • VENTILATORS available – Today Solano hospitals have 58% of ventilators available, same as yesterday, and down substantially from last summer’s reports of 82-94% available.
Positive Test Rate: Supposedly only 5.7% – no clarification as to Tuesday’s sudden drop by over half!

Solano County reported Tuesday that our 7-day average positive test was cut by more than half overnight, down to 5.9% from 12.4% on Monday.  Today the County remained in the same range, falling from yesterday’s 6.2% to 5.7%.  It seems totally unlikely for a 7-day average to drop so precipitously overnight.  I’ll let you know if I get an explanation.  Currently, Solano has come in under the State’s purple/red tier threshold of 8%.  Even so, DON’T EXPECT A QUICK MOVE DOWN TO THE RED TIER: the State requires a county to meet criteria for the next less restrictive tier (in test rate measures AND case rate measures) for the prior two consecutive weeks in order to progress to the next tier.  The much lower and more stable California 7-day average test rate was at 2.9% today, down slightly from 3.1% yesterday(Note that Solano County displays past weeks and months in a 7-day test positivity line graph which also shows daily results.  However, the chart does not display an accurate number of cases for the most recent days, as there is a lag time in receiving test results.  The 7-day curve therefore also lags behind due to unknown recent test results.) 

By Age Group
  • Youth 17 and under – only 2 new cases overnight, total of 3,499 cases, representing 11.7% of the 29,968 total cases.  No new hospitalizations were reported today among this age group, total of 18 since the outbreak began.  Thankfully, no deaths have ever been reported in Solano County in this age groupBut cases among Solano youth rose steadily over the summer, from 5.6% of total cases on June 8 to 11% on August 31 and has remained at over 11% since September 30.  Youth are 22% of Solano’s general population, so this 11% may seem low.  The significance is this: youth are SERIOUSLY NOT IMMUNE (!) – in fact at least 18 of our youth have been hospitalized since the outbreak began.
  • Persons 18-49 years of age – 26 new cases overnight, total of 16,529 cases. This age group is 41% of the population in Solano, but represents 55.2% of the total cases, by far the highest percentage of all age groups.  The County reported 1 new hospitalization among persons in this age group today.  A total of 246 are reported to have been hospitalized since the outbreak began.  Solano recorded no new deaths in this young group today, total of 10 deaths.  Some in this group are surely at high risk, as many are providing essential services among us, and some may be ignoring public health orders.  I expect this group is a major factor in the spread of the virus.
  • Persons 50-64 years of age – only 8 new cases overnight, total of 6,261 cases.  This age group represents 20.9% of the 29,968 total cases.  The County reported 6 new hospitalizations among persons in this age group today, a total of 240 reported to have been hospitalized since the outbreak began.  No new deaths were reported in this age group today, a total of 26 deaths.
  • Persons 65 years or older – only 7 new cases overnight, total of 3,668, representing 12.2% of Solano’s 29,968 total cases.  The County reported 7 new hospitalizations among persons in this age group today, a total of 388 hospitalized since the outbreak began.  No new deaths were  reported in this age group today.  A total of 128 of our elders have died of COVID, accounting for 78% of Solano’s 164 total deaths.
City Data
  • Benicia added 1 new case overnight, total of 848 cases since the outbreak began.
  • Dixon remained steady today, total of 1,751 cases.
  • Fairfield added 13 new cases overnight, total of 8,148 cases.
  • Rio Vista remained steady today, total of 320 cases.
  • Suisun City added 8 new cases overnight, total of 2,029 cases.
  • Vacaville added 5 new cases overnight, total of 7,886 cases.
  • Vallejo added 15 new cases overnight, total of 8,898 cases.
  • Unincorporated areas added 1 new case today, total of 88 cases.
Race / Ethnicity

The County report on race / ethnicity includes case numbers, hospitalizations, deaths and Solano population statistics.  This information is discouragingly similar to national reports that indicate significantly worse outcomes among black and brown Americans.  Note that all of this data surely undercounts Latinx Americans, as there is a large group of “Multirace / Others” which likely is composed mostly of Latinx members of our communities.

  • Asian Americans are 14% of Solano’s population, and account for 12% of cases, 13% of hospitalizations, and 18% of deaths.
  • Black Americans are 14% of Solano’s population, and account for 11% of cases, but 17% of hospitalizations, and 19% of deaths.
  • Latinx Americans are 26% of Solano’s population, but account for 16% of cases, 21% of hospitalizations, and 12% of deaths.
  • Multi-race / Others are 7% of Solano’s population, but account for 33% of cases, 19% of hospitalizations, and 16% of deaths.
  • White Americans are 39% of the population in Solano County, but only account for 28% of cases, 31% of hospitalizations and 34% of deaths.

More…

The County’s Coronavirus Dashboard is full of much more information, too extensive to cover here on a daily basis.  The Benicia Independent will continue to summarize daily and highlight significant portions.  For more, check out the Dashboard at https://doitgis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=055f81e9fe154da5860257e3f2489d67.

Source
Source: Solano County Coronavirus Dashboard (posted on the County website late today).  ALSO see important daily updates from the state of California at COVID19.CA.GOV, embedded here on the BenIndy at Cases and Deaths AND Hospitalizations AND ICU Beds by REGION.

Benicia Author Stephen Golub – The Four Covid Questions, Israel and Good Vaccination News

Along with lots of caveats.

By Stephen Golub, A Promised Land, February 24, 2021
This won’t hurt a bit. (Photo by Dick Knapp)

In a week when America’s Covid fatalities topped 500,000 – an official figure that might actually understate the real toll and that in any event represents more than all of our overseas wars’ combat deaths combined – it seems incongruous but useful to summarize some good vaccination news.

So here goes.

Arguably the most important data right now (and in weeks to come) comes from Israel, which is way ahead of all other countries in its vaccination rates by virtue of a deal it cut with Pfizer. That arrangement features use of the country’s sophisticated national health care system to not only efficiently administer shots but to collect and analyze “real world” data that is even more valuable than that gathered through clinical trials.

In any event, for months I’ve had four questions about Covid vaccinations’ effectiveness. Here they are, along with preliminary answers gleaned from news reports and research analyses.

1. How likely are we to fall ill even after being vaccinated?

Vaccines vastly reduce our chances of falling ill at all. Even more important, they seem to reduce hospitalizations and deaths far more, to miniscule percentages.

As explained in this analysisnone of the approximately 74,400 people who received inoculations in five clinical trials (including for the Pfizer, Moderna and about-to-be-approved-for-the-USA Johnson & Johnson vaccines) were hospitalized or died.

Multiple reports from Israel in recent weeks are similarly favorable. The most recent one determined that Pfizer’s product has been just as effective when administered on a massive scale there as it was during clinical trials. Other details emerged a week ago:

An Israeli healthcare provider said on Wednesday that Pfizer Inc’s COVID-19 vaccine was 95% effective in a trial of 602,000 people, reinforcing the drugmaker’s efficacy findings.

Israeli HMO Maccabi, which covers over a quarter of all Israelis, said in a statement that only 608 people had tested positive for COVID-19 more than a week after receiving the second of two required Pfizer doses.

The comparison was against a group of 528,000 Israelis with similar backgrounds who did not receive the vaccine, Maccabi said. Of those, 20,621 tested positive…

Most of the 608 infected vaccinees reported only mild symptoms, such as a headache or cough, Maccabi said. Some 21 required hospitalisation, seven of whom had severe symptoms, it added.

The New York Times’ Dave Leonhardt assesses this data in a comparative manner:

Here’s a useful way to think about Israel’s numbers: Only 3.5 out of every 100,000 people vaccinated there were later hospitalized with Covid symptoms. During a typical flu season in the U.S., by comparison, roughly 150 out of every 100,000 people are hospitalized with flu symptoms. [Emphasis in original.]

Now, there’s some apples-to-oranges inexactness here, including the time frames involved and his comparing vaccinated Israeli Covid patients with an American flu patient population that apparently includes unvaccinated persons. Still, the point is that our vaccinated Covid risk may be approaching a level most of us might find acceptable.

2. How probable is it that we can spread the virus to unvaccinated people after we’re vaccinated?

The data here is not as firm as for question #1. But preliminary research indicates that if you’re vaccinated you’ll run a significantly reduced risk of transmitting the virus to unvaccinated folks.

As explained in this excellent piece, initial indications from Israeli and United Kingdom research strongly suggest that at least the Pfizer vaccine (and presumably Moderna’s as well, since it’s so similar) strongly reduces our chances of being infected with the coronavirus at all. This vaccination also seems to reduce our viral loads in our noses and throats, even if infected. The upshot is reduced risk to unvaccinated people.

In other words, as per that piece:

In total, vaccination unambiguously makes people less likely to get a case of Covid-19. Then, if a vaccinated person does get a Covid-19 case, preliminary Pfizer data from Israel suggests they’ll have lower viral loads, which other research has established makes them less likely to pass on the virus. And because of the lower viral load, if they do infect another person, the infection is less likely to be serious.

Another analysis reaches similar conclusions.

3. Do the South African, U.K and other variants change the answers to #1 and #2?

A proliferation of new Covid variants that may be more transmissible or otherwise deleterious to health has triggered considerable concern about whether and how effectively vaccines will work against them. Fortunately, there’s some encouraging though admittedly tentative evidence that vaccines perform effectively against variants, perhaps in preventing illness but at least in terms of preventing hospitalization and death.

Research in Israel indicates that the Pfizer vaccine is effective against the U.K. variant.

There is also good news regarding the South African strain. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine performed well there in clinical trials. Moderna has announced the development of a modified vaccine tailored against that variant, though it remains to be tested.

It’s true that the South African government suspended use of the AstraZeneca vaccine on the basis of a small study suggesting that it does not prevent mild or moderate cases. But the World Health Organization recommends use of the vaccine against that and other variants on the grounds that it seems effective at preventing “severe illness, hospitalizations and death, including from new variants.”

In addition, Pfizer and Moderna (using its original formula) laboratory research indicates likely effectiveness against South African and other new variants. But since these are small-scale and not clinical studies (which use human volunteers), perhaps the findings should be viewed with particular caution.

Not all the variant news is good. A rapidly spreading California strain appears to be more transmissible than the “normal” variant.

But this bad news is not totally bad. Not all experts see this as being as easily transmitted as the U.K. variant. And even the doctor leading some of the research on it predicts that vaccines should be effective against it.

4. When Can We Hug Each Other Again?

Or, more specifically, when can we hug family and friends from outside our pods, if they and we are all vaccinated? The question becomes all the more salient as Pfizer and Moderna pledge to ramp up vaccine production and availability dramatically over the next five weeks.

To my mind, this is the biggie, the greatest sign of a return to some semblance of normal, of stepping out of our caves and into the sun. In one recent article, “Ashish Jha, the dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, told [the author] that in a month or so, in the absence of a variant-driven surge, he’d probably be comfortable going to a friend’s house for a drink, mask-free and indoors, if he and his friend were both fully vaccinated.”

It’s a judgement call, tinged with some powerful emotions. Some experts are no doubt reluctant to endorse plans like Jha’s yet (even if some of them might be pondering the same actions), for fear of being or seeming irresponsible. Others, as well as non-experts like me, might be chomping at the bit, but still want to see more data come in regarding risks, transmissibility and variants.

The simple answer is that the answer isn’t simple. But the biggest good news is that we can finally ask the question.

Lots of Caveats

One huge caveat to all of the above is that we’re only starting to study and understand the vaccines’ impact on the virus within the general population, as opposed to the data from various pharmaceutical firms’ control trials. Lots can change. We’ll know far more some months from now.

Another regards the variants. The tentative good news could be swamped, should new strains arise that are more transmissible, deadly or, especially, vaccine resistant. On the other hand, modified vaccines that protect against new strains (as with the Moderna variation for the South African strain) can be developed in a period of six weeks, though getting them federally approved and then ramping up production would take additional time.

A third is that massive inequities plague the distribution of vaccines in America and abroad. These must be addressed as a matter of basic humanity and fairness, but also as a matter of protection against the growth of potentially vaccine-resistant variants.

As a final caveat, consider the source here – that is, me. I’ve done my best to summarize some complex information. But I’m just a layperson, and not an especially scientifically swift one at that.

However, I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night:

Stay safe and healthy, everybody.


Stephen Golub, Benicia – A Promised Land: Politics. Policy. America as a Developing Country.

Benicia resident Stephen Golub offers excellent perspective on his blog, A Promised Land:  Politics. Policy. America as a Developing Country.

To access his other posts or subscribe, please go to his blog site, A Promised Land.