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Santa Barbara County Public Health Department addresses surge in COVID cases across county

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. –  The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department announced it is addressing a surge in covid cases reported over the last month.

Doctors said the recent spike is especially being driven by those who are unvaccinated.

COVID cases were five times more common in that group over the last month.

As of yesterday, the case rate for the county would have put us back in the ‘purple tier’ if the state's reopening system still existed.

The department said there are currently eight outbreaks throughout the county and another one of a similar size at a school in south county.

Public health also mentioned the case rate has increased by 400% since June 25th.

Masks are strongly recommended at indoor areas such as grocery stores, gyms, restaurants and more. However, officials are not requiring it right now.

As for those who are planning to travel out of the area or visit Santa Barbara County, the department urges them to get vaccinated.

“I would strongly recommend getting the vaccine,” said Santa Barbara County Public Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg. “And I would strongly recommend being very cautious, especially when it’s airtravel. Wear the best mask possible, wash your hands frequently and please get tested.”

As back-to-school is around the corner, the Public Health Department is working closely with school districts to get as many children over the age of 12 vaccinated as possible.

Officials said over 149,000 residents are eligible to get vaccinated, but have not yet gotten the shot.

For more information on COVID-19 within Santa Barbara County, click here.

Community / Health / Lifestyle / Santa Barbara - South County / Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County / Video
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Karen Cruz-Orduña

Karen Cruz-Orduña is a reporter for NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Karen, click here.

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