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California

San Diego County coronavirus cases surge past 500

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Signs are posted on March 28, 2020, at Mission Beach in San Diego, which is closed because of the coronavirus outbreak.
(Hayne Palmour IV / San Diego Union-Tribune)

San Diego County reported 31 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, bringing the total to 519. The death toll remained unchanged at seven.

The largest number of cases, 130, was among patients in the 30-39 age range, followed by 107 cases among 20- to 29-year-olds. Only four cases were patients 9 or younger, and 298 of the cases were males.

The city of San Diego, with by far the largest population, had 314 cases, or 60.5% of the total. El Cajon had 29 cases, Chula Vista had 25 and Carlsbad had 20.

The city has reported a number of coronavirus clusters, including one at an assisted-living community in Rancho San Diego. Previously, an outbreak of COVID-19 had been confirmed at the Mission Valley Veterans Administration office and among a group of four people who had traveled out of the area.

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Every city in the county has at least one case, and 3.5% of the cases are in unincorporated areas, according to statistics provided by the countyHealth and Human Services Agency.

The latest numbers include an additional 10 people in hospitals, for a total of 106 hospitalizations, including 47 in intensive care.

As health officials worked to slow the spread of the illness, the city of Vista announced that it was closing city parks starting Monday.

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City officials said it was increasingly difficult to maintain a safe 6-foot distance between patrons as people continue to gather at parks, athletic fields and trails and enter already-closed tennis and pickleball courts.

Also on Sunday, San Diego County officials stressed food safety measures after an employee at an Albertsons in Escondido tested positive for COVID-19.

The grocery employee is one of five workers in the county’s food service industry to test positive. Of those, four worked in restaurants, Amy Herbert, the county’s assistant director of environmental health, said at the daily county government briefing.

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“In these instances, our food facilities have done the right thing,” she said. “They have self-closed. They have followed sanitation and disinfection protocols, and they have reopened when it has been safe for the public and there is no ongoing risks at these facilities.”

Health officials reminded the public to practice physical distancing when grocery shopping or getting takeout at restaurants — washing hands frequently after being out and washing produce when shoppers get home.

Diehl and Freeman write for the San Diego Union-Tribune. Staff writer Karen Kucher contributed to this report.


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