SANTA BARBARA, Calif.- Since 2019, more than 700 people have died from Covid-19 in Santa Barbara County and more than 106-thousand cases have been reported.
“The challenge is that the cases that we see reported in the news don't tell the story any longer because most people who are getting COVID are testing on their own at home with a test that's not reported to public health, so it doesn't show up in any official numbers,” said Cottage Health Medical Director of Infection Prevention and Control Dr. David Fisk.
Local health experts like Cottage Health Medical Director Dr. David Fisk say even with outside events like fiesta... we could see an upswing in even more cases.
“The current variant of COVID is so transmissible that there is some risk of acquiring it in large crowds outdoors. So if you're going to go to an event, try to keep your distance from other people. That is important. Wearing a mask,” added Fisk.
Although many event organizers and volunteers are hoping for a large turnout at fiesta, La Presidente, Maria Cabrera is making health and safety a priority.
“This is the time to be together. But to be together safe, said La Presidente de Fiesta 2022 Maria Cabrera.
The pandemic has allowed event organizers to become more creative in bringing people together for virtual events.
This year people will still be able to partake in fiesta remotely.
“Fiesta Pequeña will be livestreamed. Fiesta will be livestreamed. So those are good things for those who can't come in because either age or their concerns about their health,” added Cabrera.
Vaccines, booster shots, physical distancing, and masking all help stop the spread of the virus.
“very much looking forward to going to do this year but I'm going to keep my distance from large crowds outside. And if I'm in a confined space, I'll put a mask on,” said Fisk
The experts say encourage people to remember that masking and social distancing are the best ways to protect themselves and their family from the virus.
Maria Cabrera, La Presidente de Fiesta 2022
“As a community, we need to be here for each other. So we want to be safe and healthy all together,” said Cabrera.