4 SoCal counties failing COVID-19 benchmarks for communities of color

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Beachgoers walk out onto the Pacific Beach Pier in San Diego on Saturday, July 4, 2020. (SANDY HUFFAKER/AFP via Getty Images)

Beachgoers walk out onto the Pacific Beach Pier in San Diego on Saturday, July 4, 2020. (SANDY HUFFAKER/AFP via Getty Images)

A large swath of Southern California is failing to meet a new state health equity metric that ensures counties are helping poor communities of color most disproportionately affected by the coronavirus, creating new barriers to further reopening.

At least 12 counties — including four in Southern California — aren’t meeting the new metric, which is designed to ensure that test positivity rates in the most disadvantaged neighborhoods don’t significantly exceed a county’s overall rate. It measures the seven-day average positivity rate of a county’s lowest quartile based on the California Healthy Places index against the infection rate countywide.

“We all know that low-income Latino, Black and Pacific Islander Californians have been the hardest hit in this pandemic,” acting state health officer Dr. Erica Pan said during a news briefing this week.

“Our goal is to reduce disease transmission in all communities, especially those most at risk.”

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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