KQED: Solano County on State’s COVID-19 Watch List after Spike in Hospitalizations

[Editor: See July 1 update: Solano County among 19 California counties ordered to close bars, indoors restaurant seating and more.  – R.S.]
KQED Coronavirus Updates, June 29, 2020

A recent increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations has landed Solano County on the state of California’s list for “targeted engagement,” to slow further spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced on Monday.

While cases of the coronavirus and hospitalizations are on the rise throughout California, the state is zeroing in on counties experiencing the most acute spikes.

“Being on the county monitoring list brings with it additional attention and focus, additional assistance, some additional resources at the state level,” said Mark Ghaly, secretary of California’s Health and Human Services Agency.

Ghaly hopes the designation “really galvanizes the response at the county level in order to … make sure that spread does not increase so rapidly.”

Nineteen counties have been placed under increased monitoring by the state, covering nearly three quarters of California’s population. On Monday, Glenn, Merced and Orange counties were added along with Solano.

In Solano County, hospitals have seen a 23% increase in their three-day average of COVID-19 patients. The spike has been attributed in part to a jump in infections among dozens of North Bay farmworkers, many of whom work in Napa and Sonoma, but reside in Solano County.

State and county health officials have identified a list of steps to improve virus mitigation, including working with vineyard management companies to implement physical distancing measures and enlisting Spanish interpreters to educate workers on public health guidelines.