Contra Costa County health officials are watching the data closely to see if a trend is materializing after a recent single-day spike of 65 positive COVID-19 cases.
They will intensify that scrutiny on June 17 with the opening of hair salons and barber shops, where contact with patrons is far more intimate. The likes of indoor dining, bars (with or without food), gyms and fitness centers, and those offering limited indoor leisure opportunities such as arcades, billiards and bowling alleys will follow suit July 1.
Spokesman Will Harper acknowledged mid-July will be an important time as it will follow the incubation period for the virus after these two critical openings.
The single-day spike included an outbreak of cases involving residents and several workers at San Miguel Villa, a skilled nursing facility in Concord. More testing results from Kaiser Hospital also contributed to the caseload.
“In general, we have started seeing an increase of cases as we have slowly reopened things,” said Harper.
“This is not totally unexpected.” he added. “Reopening and more social interaction, thus more risk of spreading.”
Another factor that has caught officials’ attention is the recent rise in hospitalization from 13 to 20 in a single week.
Harper noted that recent information provided to state health officials showed the county’s test positivity rate is increasing too. This refers to the percentage of people being tested who are found to be positive. Where is was 2.5 percent a little while ago, it is now 4 percent.
An 8 percent rate is the trigger point where officials could decide to roll things back in the county, Harper said.