Solano County COVID numbers soaring, Public Health Department issues partial report due to tech difficulties

NOTE: The information below is not the latest.  CLICK HERE for today’s latest information.

Solano County Public Health continues to have problems posting the usual updated details in a timely manner.  Today’s COVID dashboard (below) fails to update City data and cases, hospitalizations and deaths by age and race.  I will show a brief report here, but please check back tomorrow to find out if the County posts any more.

January 3, 2022 SUMMARY: Solano County recorded 1,229 new infections over the New Years holiday, and 4 new COVID-related deaths.  Solano continues in EXTREMELY HIGH rate of community transmission.

Solano dashboard, Monday, January 3:

DEATHS: Solano reported 4 new deaths as of Monday, January 3.  No demographic data was given on these deaths.  A total of 355 Solano residents have now died of COVID or COVID-related causes over the course of the pandemic.

CASES BY AGE GROUP: The County did not update the Demographics tab on its COVID dashboard since Monday, Dec. 27.  No new information is available on cases by age group.

COMMUNITY TRANSMISSION RATE: Over the last week, Solano has risen dramatically into what I would call EXTREMELY HIGH transmission, with 2,569 new cases, up from 1,486 at last report.  CDC FORMULA: Based on Solano County’s population, 450 or more cases in 7 days places Solano in the CDC’s population-based definition of a HIGH transmission rate.  We would need to drop below 225 cases in 7 days to rate as having only MODERATE community transmission.

ACTIVE CASES: Solano’s 2,017 ACTIVE cases is up dramatically from the County’s last report of 1,382 active cases.


Cases by City from Monday Dec. 27, not updated since that date…
  • On last report, Benicia saw 65 new cases over the last 7 days, sending Benicia even deeper into the CDC’s HIGH rate of community transmission.  (see chart below).  Based on Benicia population, MODERATE is defined as less than 14 cases over the last 7 days, SUBSTANTIAL is 14-27 cases, and HIGH is 28 or more cases.  Benicia will need to maintain fewer than 14 new cases-per-7-days for 30 consecutive days before relaxing its mask mandateNote above that Solano County is currently also experiencing HIGH transmission.
Benicia’s CDC Case Rate from Solano’s Monday Dec. 27 report, not updated since that date…

CONFLICTING DATA ON POSITIVE TEST RATE:  Last Wednesday, I observed a dramatic discrepancy between Solano’s 7-day test positivity data as displayed on a PC (16%) compared to that displayed on an android phone (22.9%). I am holding off posting an update, hoping for conclusive County numbers. I asked Solano County Public Health Officer Bela Matyas to clarify and, grateful for my pointing out the error, he is looking into it. Matyas reports that they have been experiencing “transmission errors” and are looking into quality control measures to reduce such errors. My best guess is that the error has yet to be corrected, so I will not hazard a guess tonight.  COMPARE: The 1/3/22 California rate is 10.8%.  [Source: Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Tracking Center]  The U.S. rate jumped to 17.13% as of 1/3/22. [Source: CDC COVID Data Tracker.] 


CURRENT hospitalizations: rose substantially today from 44 persons to 56 persons.  (See also TOTAL hospitalizations, next below…)

TOTAL hospitalizations: Solano County’s TOTAL hospitalized over the course of the pandemic must be independently discovered in the County’s occasional update of hospitalizations by Age Group and by Race/Ethnicity.   Solano Public Health did not update its age and race hospitalizations charts today.  Solano hospitals have reported a total of over 3,225 COVID patients since the beginning of the outbreak.  (Data on age is more reliable than that on race/ethnicity.)

ICU Bed Availability rose from 20% at last report to 23%, still in the Yellow danger zone.

Ventilator Availability  was up slightly from 69% to 71%.


Wear your mask in indoor public spaces and workplaces!
Due to a recent increase in cases, CDPH has mandated that everyone in California wear a mask in indoor public spaces and workplaces. The order is in effect December 15, 2021 to January 15, 2022.  LEARN MORE…

Masks Required in Solano

Solano County follows State of California guidelines, requiring the wearing of a mask indoors – in all public places – even if you’re fully vaccinated.

From Solano County’s COVID-19 Dashboard:

12/20/21 Update
Mask Requirement Flyers: (English – PDF) (English – Word Doc) (Spanish – PDF) (Spanish – Word Doc)
12/13/21 Update

CDPH Face Coverings Updated Guidance
From December 15, 2021 – January 15, 2022, the state requires wearing a mask indoors – in all public places – even if you’re fully vaccinated. 
CDPH Travel Guidance
CDPH Mega Events Guidance

Solano County guidance for celebrating holiday traditions safely
Visit the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) website or the CDC website for additional holiday tips on protecting yourself and your family during the holidays

On December 7, Benicia City Council chose to keep the city’s mask mandate in place for another 30 days and review again in January. All Councilmembers expressed confidence that Benicia’s case numbers are likely to remain in MODERATE transmission for a 30-day period soon, [note that this has NOT been the case – Benicia has lapsed back into the HIGH transmission rate].  After 30 days in the MODERATE rate, the City Manager is empowered to unilaterally lift the mask mandate.  Four Councilmembers (excluding Mr. Largaespada) chose to remain cautious under the current mandate, requiring the 30-days at MODERATE.  If all goes well, the mandate may have been lifted before a possible reconsideration at the January 18 Council meeting.  But if the mandate is still in place on January 18, Council has now directed staff to bring a recommendation at that time for changing the METRICS by which the City determines a safe cutoff date for lifting the mask mandate.   All members agreed that the 7-day-case-rate metric would be strengthened if in some fashion it could be combined with hospitalization rates and vaccination rates.  How to determine those rates, and how to combine them for a determination would be covered in the staff recommendation.
See the video discussion of the Dec. 7 Council meeting – CLICK HERE (then scroll down on the agenda and click on item number 21.A – UPDATE ON FACE COVERINGS MANDATE.)
Vallejo also passed an indoors mask mandate on August 31.  In the Bay Area, Solano County REMAINS the only holdout against a mask mandate for public indoors spaces.

SOLANO COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS failed to consider an agendized proposal for a countywide MASK MANDATE on Tuesday, September 14.  Bay Area news put Solano in a sad light: all other county health officers issued a joint statement offering details on when they would be able to lift mask mandates (not likely soon).  TV news anchors had to point out that Solano would not be considering such a move since our health officer had not been able to “justify” a mask mandate in the first place.  The Solano Board of Supervisors has joined with Dr. Bela Matyas in officially showing poor leadership on the COVID-19 pandemic.

HOW DOES TODAY’S REPORT COMPARE?  See recent reports and others going back to April 20, 2020 on my ARCHIVE of daily Solano COVID updates (an excel spreadsheet).

>The data on this page is from the Solano County COVID-19 Dashboard.  The Dashboard is full of much more information and updated Monday, Wednesday and Friday around 4 or 5pm.  On the County’s dashboard, you can hover a mouse or click on an item for more information.  Note the tabs at top for “Summary, Demographics” and “Vaccines.”  Click here to go to today’s Solano County Dashboard.