Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Local News

Leading South Coast Public Health Expert Says Latest COVID-19 Case Surge Hasn't Peaked Yet

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The COVID-19 surge is continuing on the Central and South Coasts, according to public health experts in the region.

Ventura County reports 186 news cases Tuesday; Santa Barbara County confirms 86 additional cases.

The COVID-19 case surge on the Central and South Coasts continues, with no sign that it’s peaked yet. Ventura County reported 186 new cases on Monday.

Dr. Robert Levin is Ventura County’s Public Health Officer. The health official says the surge during the last few weeks has been fed by younger, unvaccinated people.

But, the Delta variant means than even some of those who are vaccinated are testing positive for the virus. Still, Dr. Levin says having that shot greatly decreases the chance of hospitalization, or death.

So, if you are vaccinated, do you need to get tested? And, when? Dr. Levin says if you are vaccinated and you end up around someone who has tested positive, it's time to get checked.

Dr. Levin says booster shots could be recommended for some people in high risk groups in the next few weeks. He says it would apply to people with immune issues, or those fighting cancer.

With the surge pushing much of California into what would have been the most restrictive purple tier when the state was using the tier system, Dr. Levin thinks the state may move to make wearing masks indoors mandatory for everyone.

Santa Barbara County currently requires everyone to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status. In Ventura County, vaccinated people don’t have to wear masks indoors, but it is recommended.

Dr. Levin says there’s a simple answer to getting a handle on the current surge and the pandemic. It’s one health experts have been trying to get people to do for months. He says if everyone was vaccinated, the virus wouldn't have the opportunity to develop variants, and the pandemic would end.