COVID-19 live updates: 'Double mutant' variant found in Bay Area, Stanford researchers confirm

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The COVID-19 pandemic is having a major impact across the world and also in cities across Northern California. The latest number of confirmed cases in the U.S. can be found at the CDC's 2019 Novel Coronavirus in the U.S. page. (The CDC updates the webpage on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.)

Join anchor Kristen Sze for ABC7's daily interactive newscast about the novel coronavirus outbreak in the Bay Area and other hot topics. You can check here to stream the show Monday-Friday at 3 p.m.


Here are the latest developments on the respiratory illness in the U.S.:

April 5, 2021


5 a.m.
'Double mutant' COVID-19 variant found in Bay Area

Stanford researchers confirmed one case of a "double mutant" variant in the Bay Area, believed to be the first of its kind in the United States. It carries two mutations of the virus that helps it latch itself onto cells. The researchers do not know yet if the variant is more infectious or resistant to vaccines. They say it originated in India, and could be partially responsible for a new surge of cases in that country.

April 3, 2021


11:30 a.m.
Nearly 4,900 new confirmed cases reported in CA, according to state health officials


California has 3,577,951 confirmed cases to date, according the California Department of Public Health.

There were 4,877 newly recorded confirmed cases Friday. Today's data includes some tests and cases that were reported during the past two weeks but not counted due to a delay in data processing.

The 7-day positivity rate is 1.8%.

There have been 54,895,447 tests conducted in California. This represents an increase of 341,529 during the prior 24-hour reporting period.

There have been 58,404 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

April 2, 2021



1 p.m.
CA to loosen restrictions on indoor concerts, theater performances

California will allow indoor concerts, theater performances and other private gatherings at limited capacity starting April 15. The California Department of Public Health announced the changes as the rate of people testing positive for COVID-19 nears a record low. Get more details here.

6:25 a.m.
Vaccination site to open in East Palo Alto
A new COVID vaccination site will open later today at Cesar Chavez Ravenswood Middle School in East Palo Alto. Local leaders say the site will bridge the equity gap for the city, which has the lowest vaccination rates in the county.

April 1, 2021



2:30 p.m.
California expands vaccine eligibility to people 50 and older

Californians ages 50 and older can now make an appointment for a COVID-19 vaccine on the state's MyTurn site. Details on how to make an appointment here.

12 p.m.
Santa Clara Co. health officials warn of increase in COVID-19 variants

Santa Clara County health officials warned of an increase in variant cases of COVID-19. All four of the variants of concern have been found in Santa Clara County, according to health officials. Hear more from health officials here.

7:30 a.m.
Fremont students to remain in distance learning
Kids in Fremont will remain on distance learning for the rest of the school year. Fremont Unified's superintendent explained in a newsletter yesterday that the school district and the teachers union could not reach an agreement on how to return to the classrooms. He says the district is walking away from negotiations after months of talks. Last night, the teachers union president said she hopes the district will return to the bargaining table.

March 31, 2021


7:20 a.m.
Alameda Co. enters orange tier

Orange tier rules take effect in Alameda County today. Indoor gym capacity can expand to 25%, restaurants, movie theaters and churches can increase capacity to 50%. Bars can reopen outdoors without food.

March 30, 2021



5:45 p.m.
Oakland A's to offer more seats on Opening Day

The Oakland A's tweeted Tuesday night that they would be offering more seats for Opening Day on Thursday. This comes after the state announced that Alameda County is allowed to move into the orange tier starting Wednesday.



12 p.m.
SF's Moscone Center to reopen for conferences in September

San Francisco's Moscone Center is going to reopen for conferences at the end of September. The American Society for Surgery of the Hand is booked for September 30 through October 2. Organizers say they expect just about everyone who attends will be vaccinated by then. The last conference at Moscone was in February 2020.

Lollapalooza pushes for in-person music festival in August
The organizer of Lollapalooza is pushing for an in-person return of Chicago's massive music festival. Co-founder Perry Farrell told iHeartRadio he wants to bring the festival back in August in one capacity or another. This would only happen if coronavirus cases in Illinois continue to drop.
This comes after Outside Lands in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park announced earlier this month that they're moving the annual 3-day event to Halloween weekend.

SJ city officials consider extending Al Fresco program
The San Jose City Council will vote Tuesday to possibly extend Al Fresco through Sept. 30, but some are hoping the program will last longer -- or even become permanent.

"We wish it was a longer extension," said Nate LeBlanc, business development manager with the San Jose Downtown Association. "We feel that this has been a great program and we really appreciate the city being flexible with this. It's had a tangible benefit."

He said SJDA is advocating for an extension through December. Even with Santa Clara County this month moving into the less-restrictive orange tier, restaurants can still only seat customers indoors at 50% capacity, making Al Fresco an essential part of recouping lost business.

10:30 a.m.
Contra Costa Co. opens vaccine eligibility to 16+

Contra Costa County health officials are now encouraging everyone who lives or works in the county age 16 or older to request an appointment to receive a COVID-16 vaccine. The move will expand eligibility to another 375,000 county residents who have not yet been vaccinated. Officials say that Contra Costa County will no longer refer to eligibility phases or tiers in determining who gets the vaccine and doses are available to anyone the FDA has approved for use of the vaccine. Here's the full story and more information about making an appointment.

5 a.m.
Oakland Unified begins in-person learning today
Oakland Unified students begin returning to in-person learning today. It will begin with pre-k to 2nd grade. So far, Oakland Unified says about 60-percent of families have said they'll return to in-person learning.

March 29, 2021



11 a.m.
Biden: 90% of adults will be COVID vaccine-eligible in three weeks

President Joe Biden announced on Monday afternoon that 90% of adults will be eligible to get a coronavirus vaccine within the next three weeks as well has have a vaccination site within five miles of where they live. "For the vast, vast majority of adults, you won't have to wait until May 1. You'll be eligible for your shot on April 19," Biden said. Read more about his remarks here.

9 a.m.
San Mateo County Event Center announces return of county fair

The San Mateo County Event Center announced they're hosting an in-person county fair this summer after being forced to cancel last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The fair will be held from Saturday, June 5 to Sunday, June 13.

There will be some changes this year, including scheduled timed entry for all visitors. All tickets will be sold online and digital tickets will be scanned at the gate to provide a touchless experience. All guests will be required to wear masks while attending this event.

5 a.m.
Calif. to expand vaccine eligibility later this week

On Thursday, the state is allowing anyone 50 and up to get their COVID-19 vaccine. Two weeks after that, eligibility expands to anyone 16 and up. Contra Costa County has already been vaccinating those 50 and up and are preparing for those 16 and older later this week.

March 28, 2021


1:30 p.m.
California's 7-day positivity rate drops slightly to 1.7%

California's 7-day COVID-19 positivity rate dropped slightly to 1.7%, according to data reported by state health officials.

California has 3,562,191 confirmed cases to date with 2,998 newly recorded confirmed cases Saturday. A total of 209,863 tests were conducted during the prior 24-hour reporting period.
Providers have reported administering a total of 17,136,841 vaccine doses statewide.

March 27, 2021


12:30 p.m.
7-day positivity rate at 1.8%


California has 3,559,193 confirmed cases to date, according to the California Department of Public Health

There were 3,278 newly recorded confirmed cases Friday.

The 7-day positivity rate is 1.8%.

There have been 53,170,348 tests conducted in California. This represents an increase of 200,192 during the prior 24-hour reporting period.

There have been 57,551 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

As of March 27, providers have reported administering a total of 16,775,843 vaccine doses statewide.

March 26, 2021



11 a.m.
Facebook reopening its Bay Area offices starting May 10

Facebook says it's reopening its Bay Area offices starting May 10. Most employees have been working from home for months. The company will start by opening its Menlo Park headquarters at just 10% capacity. Its Fremont offices will follow on May 17. The Sunnyvale and San Francisco locations will reopen on May 24. Many employees will continue to work from home and some won't return until September.

Facebook's work-from-home environment has not hurt the company financially. Its net income is up 58% from the year before.

7:45 a.m.
New vaccination site coming to Contra Costa Co.
A new mass vaccination site will open on Tuesday at the shuttered water park, Six Flags Hurricane Harbor. It is a joint effort between the city of Concord, Contra Costa County and Kaiser, with staff on site mapping out the drive-through set up that will eventually vaccinate 15,000 people a week with the help of the National Guard.

March 25, 2021



11 a.m.
CA to expand vaccine eligibility mid-April for people 16 and older

California is expanding the list of people who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccination, opening it up to everyone 16 and older starting April 15, it was announced. Speaking at a vaccination site in Orange County, Gov. Gavin Newsom also announced that everyone 50 and over will be able to make an appointment to receive a shot starting April 1 based on an expected increase in vaccine supply, which up until now has been limited. Get more details here.

9 a.m.
Talks underway to keep Oakland Coliseum vaccination site open
The Oakland Coliseum mass vaccination site is scheduled to shut down in the coming weeks, but talks are underway to keep it running. State and federal officials opened up the site in February. Since then workers have administered six-thousand shots a day. Right now the site receives special vaccine allocations directly from the federal government. Alameda County officials say they are discussing transitioning the site to county management.

March 24, 2021


6:15 a.m.
3 more Bay Area counties enter orange tier

Marin, San Francisco and Santa Clara counties are moving into the orange tier today. That means office buildings can reopen at 25% capacity. Restaurants and other attractions can operate at 50% capacity.

For more details on what can reopen in each tier, visit this page.

March 23, 2021



10 a.m.
3 Bay Area counties officially join orange tier

Health officials announced Tuesday that San Francisco, Marin and Santa Clara Counties have officially joined the orange tier. San Francisco Mayor London Breed said during a press conference Tuesday that the city is "proceeding with caution" but she's hoping the city will reach the yellow tier within a few weeks.

6:20 a.m.
3 more Bay Area counties could join orange tier
State health officials are expected to allow three Bay Area counties to move into the next tier of reopening. San Francisco, Marin and Santa Clara Counties could join San Mateo County in the orange tier.

In the orange tier, indoor operations may begin with 25% capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer. In the yellow tier, indoor operations may increase to 50% of capacity or 200 people, whichever is fewer.

For more details on what can reopen in each tier, visit this page.

March 22, 2021


11 a.m.
Contra Costa Co. extends vaccine eligibility to those 50 and older
Contra Costa County is extending vaccine eligibility to people who are 50 and older who live or work in the county -- regardless of whether they have an underlying health condition. The county says it extended eligibility because of an increase in COVID-19 vaccine supply.

5:10 a.m.
Contra Costa Co. to honor lives lost to COVID-19
Contra Costa County will honor the lives lost to COVID-19 one year since the first known death there. Since March 22 of last year, more than 730 county residents have died. Organizers say the Hope and Healing Virtual Event will honor their memories and promote community healing. There will also be a live musical performance. The virtual ceremony will be broadcast from Contra Costa Regional Medical Center starting at 8 p.m.

March 21, 2021


11 a.m.

California's 7-day positivity rate is 1.8%, state officials say

State health officials released the most recent statistics on COVID-19 Sunday. California has 3,545,278 confirmed cases to date. There were 3,350 newly recorded confirmed cases Saturday, with 7-day positivity rate of 1.8%. 56,118 COVID-19 deaths have been reported since the start of the pandemic. As of Mar. 21, providers have reported administering a total of 14,520,575 vaccine doses statewide. The CDC reports that 18,234,500 doses have been delivered to entities within the state.

March 20, 2021


4 p.m.
7-day positivity rate in CA remains under 2%
California has 3,541,928 confirmed cases to date, and there were 3,107 newly recorded confirmed cases Friday, according to the California Department of Public Health.

The 7-day positivity rate is 1.9%.

There have been 52,047,615 tests conducted in California. This represents an increase of 211,492 during the prior 24-hour reporting period.

There have been 56,072 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

As of March 20, providers have reported administering a total of 14,180,095 vaccine doses statewide. The CDC reports that 18,234,500 doses have been delivered to entities within the state. Numbers do not represent true day-to-day change as reporting may be delayed

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