Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday that four new counties would be required to close hair salons, gyms and other businesses, marking the first time the state has updated its list of areas experiencing high transmission of COVID-19 in more than two weeks since a massive data flub skewed the count of positive cases.
The state uses the list to monitor surges in coronavirus cases, hospitalizations and community transmissions and to guide decisions on allowing counties to open certain sectors, including schools and in-person services at places of worship.
Officials paused the list at 38 counties on July 31 as the state worked to correct problems with its electronic disease reporting and surveillance system, known as CalREDIE. The data issues caused a backlog of 295,000 coronavirus test results and preceded the sudden departure of the state’s public health officer, Dr. Sonia Angell, who oversaw the reporting system.
Santa Cruz County is now off the list, while Amador, Mendocino, Inyo and Calaveras were added and must close businesses by Thursday. Sierra County was added two days ago, and could also be subject to closures if it fails to meet state thresholds for a third day. The governor said he expected San Diego would come off the list this week.
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