The California Department of Public Health released its weekly tier designation on Tuesday and while the Yuba-Sutter area remains in the most restrictive tier, residents are making great progress, said Bi-County Health Officer Dr. Phuong Luu.

Sutter County currently has a case count of 9.3 new cases per day per 100,000 residents and a test positivity of 6.5 percent. Yuba County has a case count of 10.1 new cases per day per 100,000 residents and a test positivity of 9.4 percent. Luu said in order for either county to be removed from its current tier, it must drop down to 7 new cases per day per 100,000 residents and have a test positivity of less than 8 percent.

“Let’s all commit to continuing to drive down both the case counts and test positivity so that our businesses and schools can reopen,” Luu said.

Luu said the CDPH did release guidance on Tuesday that will allow for the reopening of indoor nail salons with modifications, even in the most restrictive tier. She said area outreach teams – the Yuba Enterprise Support (YES) team and the Sutter COVID Outreach Resiliency Effort (SCORE) team – will be working with local businesses to ensure they understand the new guidance and to see if they are in need of personal protective equipment.

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases increased by 11 on Tuesday, bringing the area’s total to 2,819 cases.

Eighteen people were hospitalized as of Tuesday evening, while 43 residents recovered from the virus. Seventeen local residents have died due to the virus to date.

Now that the U.S. death count has reached 200,000 people – over 20 percent of total deaths worldwide from COVID-19 – the virus is now in the top three causes of death in the U.S. for 2020 – only behind heart disease (647,000 deaths) and cancer (559,000 deaths).

“All of this to say that COVID-19 remains real and dangerous. All of us have the power to prevent unnecessary infections, hospitalizations, and deaths by not engaging in riskier behaviors,” Luu said. “…And in order to avoid dual pandemics at once, please get your flu shot as soon as possible. You can get sick with the seasonal flu and COVID-19 at the same time, which would certainly worsen symptoms, especially for those more vulnerable populations who have heart or respiratory issues.”

Luu said residents who plan to attend a social gathering should try limiting the number of households they interact with; maintain social distance; and wear facial coverings when in close contact.

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