Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases title=
Santa Barbara County Public Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg during Tuesday's press conference
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By edhat staff

Santa Barbara County Public Health officials are reporting a "dramatic increase" in COVID-19 cases due to unvaccinated residents.

During a press conference on Tuesday, officials stated the county's case rate increased by 400% in one month. 

Public Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg expressed frustration against those who choose not to get one of the COVID-19 vaccines when it's now easily accessible.

"I am saddened to report that Santa Barbara County is experiencing a dramatic increase in new COVID cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. I am particularly saddened and upset because all of this is 100% preventable," said Dr. Ansorg.

Public Health Director Dr. Van Do-Reynoso confirmed local numbers are increasing in a "very rapid manner in the span of two weeks."

Santa Barbara County active COVID-19 cases increased by 70% to 303 from a two-week average of 179. Additionally, hospitalizations increased by 71% and the testing positivity rate reached 5.3%.

Dr. Do-Reynoso also confirmed eight COVID-19 outbreaks across the county. One location is a homeless shelter in Santa Maria and the other is a school in the South County with 23 positive cases, mostly students.

If the state was still using the color-coded tier system, Santa Barbara County would be at the brink of the purple tier, she said.

Nearly 52% of the county's entire population is fully vaccinated and 61% of those that are eligible. Approximately 149,600 county residents are unvaccinated.

Dr. Ansorg confirmed 80% of new positive cases and all hospitalizations were unvaccinated people. Approximately 20% of new COVID-19 cases were among vaccinated people although none required hospitalization most had zero to minimal symptoms. 

While addressing "breakthrough" infections, Dr. Ansorg stated, "what we are seeing so far is that asymptomatic, vaccinated people do not seem to spread the virus."

Dr. Do-Reynoso stated the Public Health Department will consider reinstating the mask mandate if the numbers continue to consistently increase, but for now, they're content issuing advisories and encouraging vaccination.

On Tuesday morning, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced a change to its masking recommendations as it grows more concerned over the Delta variant of Covid-19, urging vaccinated people in certain areas of the country to resume wearing masks indoors in public areas.

People living in areas with "high" or "substantial" Covid-19 transmission should resume wearing masks indoors, said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. This is nearly two-thirds of counties in the United States. 

For those who are unvaccinated, the guidance remains the same, continue to wear a mask until receiving the vaccine. 

The CDC's latest guidance also recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status.

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ConservativeSB Jul 27, 2021 04:41 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Using ONLY percentages is only a scare tactic for the misinformed. Yes 300 active cases is worrisome. But we had 2,500 active cases during most of January. Noozhawk had a great breakdown of vaccination rate by zip code I suggest people check out.

sacjon Jul 27, 2021 05:16 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

CONSERVATIVESB - don't waste your time nitpicking over numbers and stats, the FACT is that the rates are going up and we have about 49% of our County population unvaxxed and at high risk now. Don't exert the energy to quibble with minutia, just get vaxxed and wear a mask indoors. If you're not vaxxed, wear one all the time. Easy. Done.

sacjon Jul 27, 2021 06:41 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

CONSB - Nope, just accept there's a risk and act appropriately. You're wasting time nitpicking numbers. Fact is, infection rates are on the rise no matter what. If you're not vaxxed and being careful still, you're at risk. Super easy.

ChemicalSuperFreak Jul 27, 2021 05:38 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

"I am particularly saddened and upset because all of this is 100% preventable," said Dr. Ansorg

Well, if people are now accepting that breakthrough cases really are occurring, perhaps Ansorg should use another percentage other than 100%. It's disingenuous to say it's 100% preventable, when even the earliest and most optimistic estimates for the vaccines weren't greater than 96%. One can argue by how much they efficiency of vaccines have dropped since then, but no one will argue that the efficiency has dropped since delta arrived. It's language like this, and many other instances from politicians and public health officials, that makes people distrustful and hesitant. Just be honest for a change, and let people decide for themselves.

SBsurferlife Jul 28, 2021 09:41 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Chem, reading your comments is extraordinarily frustrating. You know that Dr. Ansorg is discussing hospitalizations and deaths, it's mentioned in the beginning part of his quote. Yet you continue to act as if you know better. People ARE deciding for themselves about the vaccine and that's why we're in this mess.

DBD Jul 28, 2021 10:54 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

SBSURF- I think what CSF is getting at is that when there is distrust of the officials, it makes them hesitant to get vaccinated. When numbers such as 100% are used, and obviously not accurate, it leads to more hesitancy. I personally know many people in this camp.

Bird Jul 28, 2021 04:01 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

DBD, is it all vaccinations or just this one? Do they vaccinate their dogs against rabies, for instance --- some dogs have a reaction to that vaccination. Are they gambling, for instance, or would they get vaccinated if it was 100% certain that they would get COVID without a vaccination? Or if they would get it without symptoms yet would infect someone they cared about? To me, it is not comprehensible why one would take this risk and I would like to understand.

DBD Jul 29, 2021 11:37 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Bird- I don't have a deep understanding on my friends and colleagues stance on all vaccines, and can only provide what i've seen with respect to the 3 covid vaccine options in the US. The rabies vaccine has been around over 100 years, whereas these are much newer and some people are reluctant to try new things(for better or worse, that is a real opinion shared by many). As far as the gambling, i think many people would be fine with getting covid vs taking a vaccine they are skeptical of. From my last 18mo observing, there isn't generally a fear of getting covid in younger age groups, the concern has been protecting the vulnerable. Just sharing what i've observed(i am vaccinated btw so go easy on the attacks, lol).

Marathoner Jul 30, 2021 12:19 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Dr. Ansorg said that this phenomena is 100% preventable meaning that the preventability is absolute, total. He did not say that 100% of the cases would not exist he did not say vaccine efficacy was 100%. The per cent modified the degree to which the problem was or not a preventable problem. It is a binary: preventable or not; 100% preventable or 100% not preventable. To launch into a snarky mudsling/nitpick implying that he was denying 96% efficacy or similarly quantifying outcomes, when he obviously was not stating so, is not helpful.

dukemunson Jul 27, 2021 06:22 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

We don’t need a lockdown, a shutdown or a mask mandate… at this point we simply need a vaccine mandate. Shutdowns and lockdowns are counter productive and the mask mandate doesn’t accomplish much… with the effectiveness of our vaccines a mandate is to vaccinate is the ticket out. Time to rip the bandaid off!!!

Chip of SB Jul 28, 2021 11:11 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

You’re absolutely right Duke! The idea that people can make decisions like choosing to get a vaccine or not for themselves when so much is on the line is absolutely insane. It’s time the Governor and perhaps even the president step up and make this happen. We need to suspend the bill of rights immediately, because this is an emergency. Everyone must either get vaccinated, or else be transported to an isolation center to keep the rest of us safe. Once we get our antiquated and self destructive bill of rights out of the way, the governor and the president can finally take some real action on other public safety issues like global warming and inequality. We need to modernize our concept of civil rights now to make everyone safer.

dukemunson Jul 28, 2021 11:27 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Chip - while I would often agree with you, there are scenarios in which the common good does transcend the individual. Think about the draft in world war 2… we suspended the “rights of the individual” for the common good. Or the shots we give our babies for polio, small pox, etc. it’s not to be done lightly or flippantly… but there are times where the common good transcends the individuals rights.

Chip of SB Jul 28, 2021 12:06 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Yes Duke, and there are many situations where the common good must come before civil liberties. For example, if government officials and science determine that certain steps are necessary to fight climate change, than we need to take those steps regardless of whether the bill of rights allows for it. Similarly, if officials and experts determine that steps need to be taken to address income inequality or historical injustice, then those steps must be take even if they infringe on someone’s “rights”. The common good comes first, not the individual. That is why we need to suspend the bill of rights and start getting things done.

dukemunson Jul 28, 2021 12:22 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Chip -

Again, I would tend to agree with your line of thinking, however there are limits and exceptions...life simply isn't simple enough to be truly and completely black and white. There are scenarios where the common good does transcend the individual (using your line of thinking, should we have not have had a draft for World War 2?). This isn't an abstract issue...the vaccine is available and will save lives. I have years worth of Edhat posts questioning and railing against government over-reach and government madness, but this issue, wildly politicized on both sides, isn't one of them. I'm all with you for fighting for rights...but there are times to step back and understand we are all part of a single country and there are duties and responsibilities therein.

LooseCannon Jul 27, 2021 06:25 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Not a good idea to send your unvaccinated 14-year-old Goleta resident daughter to Disney World in Florida. She returned home to infect your family and at least one of her teenage friends.

The height of irresponsibility and stupidity.

dukemunson Jul 27, 2021 07:04 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Weirdly specific example. Wouldn’t call it the height of irresponsibility or stupidity though. We’re doing the same thing here as they are in Florida, our curve/spike is just slightly behind. What matters is getting the vaccine… if the fam is vaccinated then yeah, hit Florida… life goes on!

LooseCannon Jul 27, 2021 08:17 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Yes, you're right. No need to be concerned if you're protected.

i'm double vaccinated, and so is my immediate family. If we get infected, the symptoms will be minor and even if we did become infected, it is extremely unlikely that we could infect others.

Nevertheless, there is the persistent threat caused by unvaccinated people, who should be treated as pariahs at this late stage in the game, having been cajoled and given plenty of opportunity to get vaccinated.

They are putting the community at risk and attenuating this crisis. I blame them for this endless crap. As long as they refuse to get vaccinated, the virus will mutate, people will die needlessly.

The unvaccinated must be refused entry to all businesses and employment places.

We need a broad VACCINE MANDATE.

Zero tolerance for the refuseniks. Make them captive in their homes, ordering food online for home delivery, with nowhere to go and nothing to do.

Reward the responsible people. Punish the rest. This is how we will end the pandemic.

MountainMan4865 Jul 27, 2021 08:49 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Wait, are we still using the PCR tests for diagnosis? The CDC just issued a statement that they are withdrawing their request to the FDA for Emergency Use Authorization of the PCR test, which will end after December 31, 2021. Not only because, at the insane level cycles (45.... really?!) being used generated nearly a 90% false positive rate, but that it cannot distinguish Covid from Influenza (or any other viral load). No wonder we saw the flu completely disappear last year in the last 9 weeks of a pretty decent flu season., and completely absent this last year. Curious how Winter time Covid has the exact same symptoms as the flu - fever, cough, and the Summer time Covid (Delta) has a completely different set of symptoms.... sneezing, runny nose, headache... just like seasonal allergies.
According to the CDC earlier this year - of the official Covid US death toll, only 5.5% of that total was strictly due to Covid and nothing else. Several California counties are revisiting their Covid death numbers - https://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local/santa-clara-countys-covid-19-death-toll-drops-by-505-after-data-change/2585739/ It would be interesting to see what Santa Barbara's numbers would be if they did the same....

a-1627444527 Jul 27, 2021 08:55 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

The usual social media FUD nonsense. The test is being withdrawn because there is a much better one available:

https://www.factcheck.org/2021/07/scicheck-viral-posts-misrepresent-cdc-announcement-on-covid-19-pcr-test/

a-1627444985 Jul 27, 2021 09:03 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

I'm sure there's more to this. It's only one test of several.

Here's the CDC report to laboratories:

"dience: Individuals Performing COVID-19 Testing

Level: Laboratory Alert

After December 31, 2021, CDC will withdraw the request to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) of the CDC 2019-Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Real-Time RT-PCR Diagnostic Panel, the assay first introduced in February 2020 for detection of SARS-CoV-2 only. CDC is providing this advance notice for clinical laboratories to have adequate time to select and implement one of the many FDA-authorized alternatives.

Visit the FDA website for a list of authorized COVID-19 diagnostic methods. For a summary of the performance of FDA-authorized molecular methods with an FDA reference panel, visit this page.

In preparation for this change, CDC recommends clinical laboratories and testing sites that have been using the CDC 2019-nCoV RT-PCR assay select and begin their transition to another FDA-authorized COVID-19 test. CDC encourages laboratories to consider adoption of a multiplexed method that can facilitate detection and differentiation of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza viruses. Such assays can facilitate continued testing for both influenza and SARS-CoV-2 and can save both time and resources as we head into influenza season. Laboratories and testing sites should validate and verify their selected assay within their facility before beginning clinical testing."
https://www.cdc.gov/csels/dls/locs/2021/07-21-2021-lab-alert-Changes_CDC_RT-PCR_SARS-CoV-2_Testing_1.html

MountainMan4865 Jul 27, 2021 09:04 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Here's from the CDC - https://www.cdc.gov/csels/dls/locs/2021/07-21-2021-lab-alert-Changes_CDC_RT-PCR_SARS-CoV-2_Testing_1.html Note paragraph three :

"In preparation for this change, CDC recommends clinical laboratories and testing sites that have been using the CDC 2019-nCoV RT-PCR assay select and begin their transition to another FDA-authorized COVID-19 test. CDC encourages laboratories to consider adoption of a multiplexed method that can facilitate detection and differentiation of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza viruses."

I don't do social media, but if this counts for you.... what ever floats your boat.

ginger1 Jul 27, 2021 09:39 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Lots of incorrect stuff in your post, but your presentation about the PCR test is basically correct. First, it absolutely does specify CoVid-19, not influenza, but not necessarily live, potentially infectious virus, but ANY part of the virus's DNA/RNA signature, dead or alive. The more cycles run, the higher the test positive rate. Could be a dead virus particle stuck in your nose from last month. Which mean false positive. Or at least not currently infectious. WHO now recommends 18 cycles and it still produces a possibly 50% false positive:infectious rate. So the test is essentially useless. I wont bore you with the details.

In the absence of underlying health conditions, the case fatality rate is actually lower than you wrote but it doesn't matter. No one has to die *from* covid. Not if they're vaccinated. Even one unnecessary death is one too many. If you choose to be unvaccinated, your possible death is on you. But your irresponsible behavior affects everyone around you.

I agree with Loosecannon. If you choose to be unvaccinated you are a clear and present danger to everyone else. You are a scourge on the rest of humanity. You should never leave your home and if absolutely must, not without a N/KN95 face mask. Stay away from me and my family. Hang out with your unvaccinated friends. It wont take too much longer before you wont have any, one way or the other.

PS: There are some people who for medical reasons cannot get the shot. It is YOUR responsibility to help protect them by being vaccinated. Choosing not to is....beyond words.

MountainMan4865 Jul 27, 2021 09:41 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Actually, truth be told, I'm a grown up, capable of critical thinking and researching information. Is that bad? Let me know right away and I'll stop so I can sit back and be spoon fed 'what I need to know' by the corporate media. Waiting for your direction.

edney Jul 27, 2021 10:41 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

I'm curious... if you and your family are all completely vaccinated, why do you care if an unvaccinated person is nearby?
Why should vaccinated people wear masks indoors?
The CDC says Johnson and Johnson is 97.5% effective and that Pfizer and Moderna are both over 99% effective so far. Furthermore the people they think got COVID after actually having two full doses almost all have mild cases.
Clearly the vaccines work and work well, so the sc ience says you are OK to do what you want and don't worry about what other people are not doing.

Here are some numbers... useful in the sense of knowing what your neighbors are up to. https://dig.abclocal.go.com/kabc/ca-vaccine-tracker/CA_vax_zip_map.html
In this case it shows that in the 93101 zip 68% of people over 12 are fully vaccinated.
The 93103 is at 69% of the over 12, with the 93111 at 79%.

However it probably is safer to send your kids to Disney World adjacent* zip 32821 at 91% than to send them to the 93458 zip in Santa Maria at 52%

* I used "adjacent" because Disney has its own zip code and all 6 permanent residents are vaccinated

SantaBarbaraObserver Jul 28, 2021 07:15 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

When no one in real life pays attention to you, you go on the internet and spend a TON of time and effort trying to get a tiny little feeling of validation... And that is the driving force behind most of these AntiVa posts on Edhat. They're lonely people who have no friends to talk with and no people to influence. They're desperate for validation and so they spend hours, days, weeks confirming their bias and deepening their cognitive dissonance. All for a few upvotes or "your (sic) totally right!" posts... Sad isnt it?

letmego Jul 28, 2021 02:10 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Hi EDNEY, as mentioned by others - some of us have unvaccinated children under 12. Also, recent data is showing that the efficacy of Pfizer drops to 84% after 6 months. So, let's see, I had my shots in April...

As far as wearing masks indoors for the vaccinated - breakthrough infections. A fully vaccinated friend of mine is home sick with active COVID.

a-1627445145 Jul 27, 2021 09:05 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

This is what labs are referred to:

https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-emergency-use-authorizations-medical-devices/in-vitro-diagnostics-euas?ACSTrackingID=USCDC_2146-DM61940&ACSTrackingLabel=Lab%20Alert%3A%20Changes%20to%20CDC%20RT-PCR%20for%20SARS-CoV-2%20Testing&deliveryName=USCDC_2146-DM61940

I know I can't evaluate this information! (that's a note to citizen lab scientists and epidemiologists, etc.)

a-1627445186 Jul 27, 2021 09:06 PM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

What tests are approved by CDC:
(I can't help those who believe the CDC is not worth listening to)

https://www.fda.gov/medical-devices/coronavirus-covid-19-and-medical-devices/covid-19-tests-and-collection-kits-authorized-fda-2020-infographic

Lotuseater Jul 28, 2021 07:58 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

There are very good reasons NOT to take the vaccine. ..and I am pro vaccine in most cases. I don’t suffer fools. If you try and mandate these vaccines, or any drug, especially to my child; you will have a war on your hands. That is not hyperbole or a joke. I got vaccinated because I made an informed decision based upon risk vs reward. Some in my family decided against it for very same calculations. That’s how it should be.
What happened to this country?

RHS Jul 28, 2021 08:07 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

Lotuseater, it is folks like you which would have killed or crippled millions from polio, small pox, measles and other deadly diseases that we have fought back against throughout human history. Your selfishness and arrogance is not enough to deny science. And do you not remember: "E Pluribus Unum" or maybe "United We Stand"? I ask the question "What happened to this country as well" and find the answer to be that knee jerk hostility to intelligence and facts which has been around as long as the "Know Nothing Party" has gone out of control through self-aggrandizing manipulators on the internet and in politics.

Babycakes Jul 28, 2021 08:17 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

RHS: Government has no right to force anyone to be injected with a vaccine, let alone an unapproved vaccine. Where are the 'My Body, My Choice' folks? It seems like their handlers have total control over their sheep. Baaaaahhhh....Baaaaahhhhh.... It used to be that progressives were skeptical of the government, but now that t-h-e-y are the government, not so much..."Do as we say, or else!"

SantaBarbaraObserver Jul 28, 2021 08:23 AM
Health Officials Report Dramatic Increase in COVID-19 Cases

You are patently wrong Babycakes. The US Government has the right to require you and every other soul to be vaccinated and has done so for far longer than you've been alive ( you're alive thanks to vaccines)... Pretending that you know isnt the same as actually knowing nor does it make you appear smarter... In fact, the opposite is true.

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