Coronavirus update: 'Early signs' rate of COVID-19 spread is slowing in Santa Clara Co., says public health department

SANTA CLARA CO., Calif. (KGO) -- Santa Clara County public health officials shared some cautiously optimistic news Tuesday in a live briefing on the novel coronavirus in their community.

"While cases continue to increase through the county, we are seeing soft signs, early signs that the rate at which our cases are increasing may be slowing," said Evelyn Ho, lead public information officer for the county's public health department.

The county has seen 1,224 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 42 deaths caused by the virus as of Tuesday morning.

These promising early signs don't mean residents should expect a return to normalcy in the immediate future. The county has a shelter-in-place order in effect until at least May 3.

"Thank you for your continued compliance with our shelter-in-place order. We need to continue to follow those orders and increase our distance ... to continue this trend that we are beginning to see."

RELATED: Everything you need to know about the Bay Area's shelter-in-place order

In an interview with ABC7 News Monday, Santa Clara County Public Health Director Dr. Sara Cody said, "While we're not out of the woods, I am cautiously optimistic that we've put our hospitals and healthcare partners in a better position to manage the infections that we expect will be continuing to be coming. ... What I will say, is taking action early gives us an advantage, gave us an advantage, in slowing things down."

Still, Dr. Cody believes shelter-in-place orders and similar restrictions could be extended as we continue to fight the virus and wait for a vaccine. See her full interview with KGO here.

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