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Coronavirus cases at San Diego State near the 600 mark

San Diego State University reports 32 new coronavirus cases.
(John Gastaldo / San Diego Union Tribune)

An additional 32 positive coronavirus tests at San Diego State University were among the 445 new cases and four COVID-related deaths announced Saturday by the county health department.

The additional cases pushed San Diego County’s totals to 42,414 confirmed cases and 734 deaths. At SDSU, there are now 594 confirmed and four probable infections, according to the university’s COVID-19 website.

According to the health department, the deaths reported Saturday, two women and two men, occurred between Sept. 7 and Sept. 10. All were older than 50 and had underlying medical conditions.

No new community outbreaks were announced.

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The county’s listing of cases by episode date — a classification that indicates roughly when each case started, rather than when it was announced to the public — shows that San Diego is once again close to crossing into the threshold that could cause it to slide to the lowest tier of the state’s COVID-19 reopening hierarchy.

On Tuesday, the California Health and Human Services Agency is scheduled to release its weekly calculation of county-by-county case and positivity rates that determines which tier each region falls into.

The state’s threshold for the lowest tier, which would force many businesses to stop serving patrons indoors, is greater than seven cases per 100,000 residents, averaged over the previous seven-day period.

The latest data from San Diego County show that the seven-day average is 6.9. However, more cases could appear as testing labs notify the health department of results with episode dates falling within the seven-day calculation window. The California Department of Public Health confirmed in an email Sept. 9 that it will calculate its next update by averaging cases with episode dates from Aug. 30 through Sept. 5.

If the region does post a number higher than seven in Tuesday’s report, nothing will change immediately. The state requires coronavirus numbers to be out of bounds for two consecutive weeks for a change in tier to occur.

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The region could also see its case rate reduced, which would allow it to stay in its current tier, if the number of coronavirus tests performed locally exceeds the state’s testing rate, as measured per 100,000 residents. The state will not release test-based adjustment information until Tuesday.


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