Santa Clara Co. seeing uptick in COVID-19 cases, transmission rate

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Santa Clara County is now seeing an uptick in COVID-19 cases and transmission rates within the community, according to health officials.

On Tuesday, Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody gave an update on the spread of the virus and noted that levels are currently higher than during the delta surge.

As for implementing a mask mandate again, Dr. Cody says they are following the CDC's strong recommendation that masks should be worn in indoor settings.

"It's time to break out your mask again and break out your tests and just be a bit more cautious than maybe you were a month ago," said Dr. Cody.

The City of San Jose on Monday reinstated a mask mandate for all city workers until May 20 which can be extended if needed.

San Jose's deputy public information officer, Demetria Machado, told ABC7 News the measure comes out of an abundance of caution.

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"We want to make sure our employees are safe, as well as our community and continue to provide vital services to our residents," she said.

Machado pointed to recent data from the County of Santa Clara, which shows an increase in positive COVID-19 cases. She said the city will continue to monitor case rates within Santa Clara County and within the organization.

On Monday, Santa Clara County's COVID-19 dashboard showed the 7-day rolling average at 552 new infections. A significant uptick compared to about 140 cases at a low point in mid-March.

Stanford Hospital epidemiologist Dr. Jorge Salinas said what we do now should not be about panicking, but rather taking personal responsibility.

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"We've received all the information. We know that masks work, we know the vaccines work, we know that good ventilation works, and we just need to implement it and tailor it to our daily life," Dr. Salinas shared.

He continued, "We can do this. We can decrease the risk."

On the county level, public health officials said Monday, they are not expecting to make changes to masking. Masks are still required in all county buildings and are strongly recommended elsewhere.

"It's more manageable now than a year or two ago with vaccines and medications," Dr. Salinas added. "But it's still a disease that, if you can avoid, I would recommend that as a doctor, for you to avoid it."
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