News

Palo Alto's COVID-19 numbers are growing

Majority of new cases attributed to community transmission

A sign urging customers to stand 6 feet away from one another is taped up inside Piazza's Fine Foods in Palo Alto. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Nearly five months into the coronavirus shutdown and the number of new COVID-19 cases in Palo Alto is rising sharply after almost completely plateauing in May, according to Santa Clara County data.

In the five weeks between mid-May and late June, just nine new cases were reported — resulting in 86 cumulative cases as of June 23. In the six weeks since then, however, no fewer than eight residents per week, and in most weeks many more, have contracted the virus.

The city's COVID-19 cases totaled 174 as of Aug. 5 — including 20 new ones in the prior week alone. That's a rate of 260 cases per 100,000 residents, or 0.26% of the city's population.

While the county's COVID dashboard does not show the numbers of Palo Altans who have been hospitalized, countywide data reveals hospitalizations have been on the rise: Daily counts of COVID-19 patients in ICU and non-ICU beds were high in March and April, decreased to lows in late May and early June, and then began rising again. They now approach the March and April numbers.

It's unclear why case numbers in Palo Alto are increasing. Asked for an explanation, the spokesperson for the county's Emergency Operations Center had none.

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Palo Alto's cases did start to rise starting in the third week of June, according to county data, a few weeks after the county relaxed its stay-at-home order as of June 5. Testing for COVID-19 also ramped up in June, although Dr. Sara Cody, the county's health officer, said at the time that testing alone did not account for the surge in numbers. She also pointed to hospitalizations as an indicator of the true incidence increase.

The rise in Palo Alto's cases doesn't appear tied to an outbreak in any congregate care facilities, such as skilled nursing homes. The California Department of Public Health monitors skilled nursing facilities for COVID-19 cases, and all in Palo Alto had either none or fewer than 11 among its residents. Webster House, Channing House, Palo Alto Sub-Acute and Rehabilitation Center, and [email protected] Alto each have fewer than 11 residents who've tested positive.

Cases among nursing home staff, who presumably aren't counted in Palo Alto's COVID-19 totals, are another story: As of Aug. 7, Palo Alto Sub-Acute in downtown Palo Alto reported having 14 cases among staff, the state database showed.

Santa Clara County Public Health data show that more residents per week are getting COVID-19 now than in May, when the curve was nearly flat. Chart by Jocelyn Dong.

So how is the virus being spread? Countywide, nearly two-thirds of new cases are thought to be community-transmitted, according to the county Public Health Department's COVID-19 dashboard, meaning that the person didn't contract the virus from someone known to them who had COVID-19.

Cody pointed last week to two concerning trends countywide: an increase in cases among Latinos and a steady rise in cases among people ages 35 and younger. Among adults, the 20-to-39 age group comprises 38.4% of those who have tested positive for the virus, according to county data. Cases among Latinos have skyrocketed to 52.2%, while they make up 25.8% of the county's population.

Within Palo Alto, cases have not been evenly distributed, according to ZIP code data from the state's California Reportable Disease Information Exchange (CalREDIE) reporting system and the county.

As of Aug. 7, ZIP code 94301 in north Palo Alto has had 57 cases among 17,191 residents (an equivalent of 337 cases per 100,000 people). ZIP code 94306, which encompasses mid-Palo Alto, has had 62 cases among 27,549 residents (or a rate of 214 cases per 100,000 people).

Meanwhile, 94304, which includes west Palo Alto and a bit of north Palo Alto, has had 19 cases among its 3,982 residents (for a rate of 487 cases per 100,000).

The county and the state health departments do not include a specific case total for Palo Alto's portion of the 94303, which it shares with East Palo Alto. But there have been fewer than 11 cumulative cases, the county noted.

The higher case numbers in certain ZIP codes could be due in part to the long-term care facilities and apartment buildings in those areas, where the risks of the virus spreading can be greater.

The coronavirus case count in Palo Alto may actually be higher than the county is currently reporting. A recent and as-yet-unfixed glitch in the state's CalREDIE reporting system is likely underreporting the number of cases, and the state is working to remedy the problem, the county has noted.

Santa Clara County issued its stay-at-home order starting on March 17; it began lifting the order incrementally in early May. Since May 31, the county has followed state guidelines for reopening the economy. It relaxed its health order on June 5 only to end up on the state's "watch list" twice in July. It partially rolled back the reopening on July 15 due to rising numbers of COVID-19-related hospitalizations.

Find comprehensive coverage on the Midpeninsula's response to the new coronavirus by Palo Alto Online, the Mountain View Voice and the Almanac here.

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Palo Alto's COVID-19 numbers are growing

Majority of new cases attributed to community transmission

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Sat, Aug 8, 2020, 10:44 pm
Updated: Wed, Aug 12, 2020, 1:27 pm

Nearly five months into the coronavirus shutdown and the number of new COVID-19 cases in Palo Alto is rising sharply after almost completely plateauing in May, according to Santa Clara County data.

In the five weeks between mid-May and late June, just nine new cases were reported — resulting in 86 cumulative cases as of June 23. In the six weeks since then, however, no fewer than eight residents per week, and in most weeks many more, have contracted the virus.

The city's COVID-19 cases totaled 174 as of Aug. 5 — including 20 new ones in the prior week alone. That's a rate of 260 cases per 100,000 residents, or 0.26% of the city's population.

While the county's COVID dashboard does not show the numbers of Palo Altans who have been hospitalized, countywide data reveals hospitalizations have been on the rise: Daily counts of COVID-19 patients in ICU and non-ICU beds were high in March and April, decreased to lows in late May and early June, and then began rising again. They now approach the March and April numbers.

It's unclear why case numbers in Palo Alto are increasing. Asked for an explanation, the spokesperson for the county's Emergency Operations Center had none.

Palo Alto's cases did start to rise starting in the third week of June, according to county data, a few weeks after the county relaxed its stay-at-home order as of June 5. Testing for COVID-19 also ramped up in June, although Dr. Sara Cody, the county's health officer, said at the time that testing alone did not account for the surge in numbers. She also pointed to hospitalizations as an indicator of the true incidence increase.

The rise in Palo Alto's cases doesn't appear tied to an outbreak in any congregate care facilities, such as skilled nursing homes. The California Department of Public Health monitors skilled nursing facilities for COVID-19 cases, and all in Palo Alto had either none or fewer than 11 among its residents. Webster House, Channing House, Palo Alto Sub-Acute and Rehabilitation Center, and [email protected] Alto each have fewer than 11 residents who've tested positive.

Cases among nursing home staff, who presumably aren't counted in Palo Alto's COVID-19 totals, are another story: As of Aug. 7, Palo Alto Sub-Acute in downtown Palo Alto reported having 14 cases among staff, the state database showed.

So how is the virus being spread? Countywide, nearly two-thirds of new cases are thought to be community-transmitted, according to the county Public Health Department's COVID-19 dashboard, meaning that the person didn't contract the virus from someone known to them who had COVID-19.

Cody pointed last week to two concerning trends countywide: an increase in cases among Latinos and a steady rise in cases among people ages 35 and younger. Among adults, the 20-to-39 age group comprises 38.4% of those who have tested positive for the virus, according to county data. Cases among Latinos have skyrocketed to 52.2%, while they make up 25.8% of the county's population.

Within Palo Alto, cases have not been evenly distributed, according to ZIP code data from the state's California Reportable Disease Information Exchange (CalREDIE) reporting system and the county.

As of Aug. 7, ZIP code 94301 in north Palo Alto has had 57 cases among 17,191 residents (an equivalent of 337 cases per 100,000 people). ZIP code 94306, which encompasses mid-Palo Alto, has had 62 cases among 27,549 residents (or a rate of 214 cases per 100,000 people).

Meanwhile, 94304, which includes west Palo Alto and a bit of north Palo Alto, has had 19 cases among its 3,982 residents (for a rate of 487 cases per 100,000).

The county and the state health departments do not include a specific case total for Palo Alto's portion of the 94303, which it shares with East Palo Alto. But there have been fewer than 11 cumulative cases, the county noted.

The higher case numbers in certain ZIP codes could be due in part to the long-term care facilities and apartment buildings in those areas, where the risks of the virus spreading can be greater.

The coronavirus case count in Palo Alto may actually be higher than the county is currently reporting. A recent and as-yet-unfixed glitch in the state's CalREDIE reporting system is likely underreporting the number of cases, and the state is working to remedy the problem, the county has noted.

Santa Clara County issued its stay-at-home order starting on March 17; it began lifting the order incrementally in early May. Since May 31, the county has followed state guidelines for reopening the economy. It relaxed its health order on June 5 only to end up on the state's "watch list" twice in July. It partially rolled back the reopening on July 15 due to rising numbers of COVID-19-related hospitalizations.

Find comprehensive coverage on the Midpeninsula's response to the new coronavirus by Palo Alto Online, the Mountain View Voice and the Almanac here.

Comments

Mark Weiss
Downtown North

Registered user
on Aug 8, 2020 at 10:52 pm
Name hidden, Downtown North

Registered user
on Aug 8, 2020 at 10:52 pm

Due to violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are only visible to registered users who are logged in. Use the links at the top of the page to Register or Login.


Midlander
Registered user
Midtown
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:49 am
Midlander, Midtown
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:49 am
29 people like this

I am quite dismayed by the current problems with the CalREDIE reporting system. Without reliable numbers, it's very hard to know how bad the situation is.

I'm sure people are working hard to fix things, but in the current situation three weeks seems a VERY long time to be having significant reporting issues on such key data.


Mary
Registered user
College Terrace
on Aug 9, 2020 at 8:09 am
Mary, College Terrace
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 8:09 am
34 people like this

Number of cases without numbers of deaths and hospitalizations (excluding transfers from out of the area) is pretty useless.


Chris C.
Registered user
Community Center
on Aug 9, 2020 at 9:02 am
Chris C., Community Center
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 9:02 am
18 people like this

I've noticed that on the Santa Clara site, they tell you the cumulative cases in Palo Alto as of "now", but don't give access to historical data. So you can't reconstruct the graph you show in this article unless you've been periodically recording the data yourself over time.

Is there a place which is archiving the historical data so we can create our own trend graphs?


Chris
Registered user
University South
on Aug 9, 2020 at 9:24 am
Chris, University South
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 9:24 am
39 people like this

The increasing rate of cases corresponds with the opening of restaurants for dining.


NeilsonBuchanan
Registered user
Downtown North
on Aug 9, 2020 at 10:26 am
NeilsonBuchanan, Downtown North
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 10:26 am
9 people like this

Thanks for this alert. We need the Santa Clara and San Mateo county experts to provide more data and longer term analysis.

Healthcare statistics for small geographic regions, especially zip codes, are tricky and I urge Palo Alto Online to follow up for your readers.


TS Member
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2020 at 10:38 am
TS Member, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 10:38 am
78 people like this

I am so not surprised. Starting in late May, a majority of our neighbors started having parties that we could hear. Graduation parties and other large gatherings in their backyards (as well as indoors I suppose). What could go wrong? As long as people remain as entitled and self-centered as they have been, we will not get a grip on this pandemic.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:17 am
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:17 am
14 people like this

I glance at the data but stats are stats. They either provide a false sense of security or create fear and anxiety in people who have a tendency to worry too much. The information has been misleading from day one. So... it is what it is. Life goes on.


YentaThe Renter
Registered user
College Terrace
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:29 am
YentaThe Renter, College Terrace
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:29 am
22 people like this

More and more folks and youth are at soccer fields, Cubberly outdoors, mostly without masks, on casual observation. Running track, playing soccer...riding bikes, scooters...all healthy outdoors activities and a joy to see but...perhaps contributing to this issue? How are you gonna keep them down on the farm after they’ve seen...downtown summer streets? Open air markets? Ahhh, the price of fresh?,


Alvin
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:39 am
Alvin, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:39 am
34 people like this

The increase in cases is mainly due to the massive increase in testing over the past three months.

Have a look at the Santa Clara County Covid-19 Dashboard. The number of tests increased from about 2,000/day in mid-May to roughly 10,000/day in late July, a five-fold increase in the numbers of tests. Web Link.

"Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody pointed last week to two concerning trends countywide: an increase in cases among Latinos and a steady rise in cases among people ages 35 and younger. Among adults, the 20-to-39 age group comprises 38.4% of those who have tested positive for the virus, according to county data. Cases among Latinos have skyrocketed to 52.2%, while they make up 25.8% of the county's population."

This is nothing to be concerned about, as younger people in the young adult age groups have extremely low death rates. 4.9% of all Covid deaths are under the age of 50.
0.0% of deaths for people under age 30. Web Link

You should cheer when you hear cases have gone up without much increase in deaths. We are that much closer to immunity. Think of reported cases as reported vaccinations.


TS Member
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:43 am
TS Member, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:43 am
28 people like this

@ Jennifer @ Alvin

In 2018, the latest year for which final data is available, the top 10 leading causes of death among all ages in the United States were:

Heart disease (655,381)
Cancer (599,274)
Unintentional injury (167,127)
Chronic lower respiratory disease (159,486)
Stroke (147,810)
Alzheimer's disease (122,019)
Diabetes (84,946)
Flu and pneumonia (59,120)
Nephritis (51,386)
Suicide (48,344)

Where will COVID be on the list at the end of 2020? It will for sure be the third leading cause of deaths in the US in 2020. And you still think it is no big deal? If you are young and healthy, you may not be at the greatest risk. However, this is a very CONTAGIOUS disease and everyone should do their utmost to protect others.


TS Member
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:51 am
TS Member, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:51 am
41 people like this

@ Alvin

What matters, with all due respect, is the testing positivity rate, rather than the absolute number of tests. The positivity rate is up in Santa Clara county, currently at 4.26% per the statistics you give a link to, and increasing. In June, it was below 2%


Alvin
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:52 am
Alvin, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:52 am
16 people like this

From the comments above, it's considered "self-centered" to want to have a backyard graduation party for your kids, to play outdoors, ride your bicycles, etc. Even Dr. Cody, who I do not admire and feel has overreacted to the Covid "crisis", which was never anything resembling New York City (subways and forcing C-19+ into nursing homes - thank you Cuomo), recommends outdoor to indoor, since the virus dissipates more quickly in the open air and wind.

Also, forcing people to stay inside contributes to isolation, loneliness, stress, weight gain and obesity, leading to both medical and mental health problems.

In my opinion, I think it is selfish and self-centered to isolate yourself and avoid exposure to the virus, because how else are we to get rid of the virus? It's not going to go away on its own by leaving it alone, and I don't think people want it to live forever, so makes more sense to spread the virus among healthier people while protecting the most vulnerable.


Alvin
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:05 pm
Alvin, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:05 pm
15 people like this

"Where will COVID be on the list at the end of 2020? It will for sure be the third leading cause of deaths in the US in 2020. And you still think it is no big deal?"

[Portion removed.]

From Dr. Robert Redfied, Director of CDC, speaking at Buck Institute on July 14th:

"But there has been another cost that we’ve seen, particularly in high schools. We’re seeing, sadly, far greater suicides now than we are deaths from COVID. We’re seeing far greater deaths from drug overdose that are above excess that we had as background than we are seeing the deaths from COVID." Web Link


chris
Registered user
University South
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:07 pm
chris, University South
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:07 pm
69 people like this

Alvin and Jennifer,

Not taking this seriously is causing the virus to spread out of control. Your American sense of entitlement is why Americans have failed miserably compared to almost all other developed countries. Look at yourself in the mirror instead of blaming the leaders you despise but are preventing from effectively doing their jobs.


Alvin
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:09 pm
Alvin, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:09 pm
17 people like this

@ Alvin "What matters, with all due respect, is the testing positivity rate, rather than the absolute number of tests. The positivity rate is up in Santa Clara county, currently at 4.26% per the statistics you give a link to, and increasing. In June, it was below 2%"

I completely disagree. What matters are hospitalizations, ICU cases, and deaths. As I said before, an increase in positivity, without more, is an increase in overall immunity, which is a great thing if we want to stop the virus.


Alvin
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:20 pm
Alvin, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:20 pm
13 people like this

"Not taking this seriously is causing the virus to spread out of control. Your American sense of entitlement is why Americans have failed miserably compared to almost all other developed countries. Look at yourself in the mirror instead of blaming the leaders you despise but are preventing from effectively doing their jobs."

You mean like Sweden, which did almost nothing, deaths fallen rapidly to zero, and is finished with the virus without destroying their economy? Web Link


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:57 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 12:57 pm
56 people like this

Sweden's death rate is 576/million vs US of 498 and South Korea has 6/million. New Zealand has 4/million, Denmark has 106/million and Norway has 47.

Clearly Sweden is NOT a good role model unless you want the US to have more deaths than we already have.

Much better to follow South Korea or New Zealand.

Web Link




chris
Registered user
University South
on Aug 9, 2020 at 1:22 pm
chris, University South
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 1:22 pm
10 people like this

Alex Azar, head of HHS, is in Taiwan right now looking for advice on handling the pandemic from real pros since almost everything this lawyer turned so-called “health expert” tried has failed.


max
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:04 pm
max, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:04 pm
18 people like this

The disappointing thing about the article is the lack of information from the health department with regard to source of infections. With hundreds of contact tracers investigating thousands of cases each month, I would have expected some insights by now. Where do these people work, do they travel, etc...? I suspect many of those infected don't really know where they got sick or refuse to reveal truth. Still, some data from our health department would be appreciated and might help.


Alvin
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:15 pm
Alvin, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:15 pm
15 people like this

"Sweden's death rate is 576/million vs US of 498 and South Korea has 6/million. New Zealand has 4/million, Denmark has 106/million and Norway has 47"

Sweden's death rate is lower than Belgium, UK, Spain, and Italy, and the virus is not over for the other European countries, but it is for Sweden.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:22 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:22 pm
37 people like this

The virus is not over for Sweden - they are averaging almost 6000 new cases a day.

Here is a good overview:

Web Link


The Voice of Palo Alto
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:37 pm
The Voice of Palo Alto, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:37 pm
38 people like this

[Portion removed.]

1. “The increase in cases is mainly due to the massive increase in testing over the past three months.”

[Portion removed.] Here is a link to an article proving that maddening logic is false:

Web Link

2. “4.9% of all Covid deaths are under the age of 50. 0.0% of deaths for people under age 30”
I don’t know if this is supposed to be a national stat or only a stat for California, but I’ve just read a California teenager died this week of COVID and a 7 year old died in Georgia this week. So how can it be “0% under 30?” Your 0% claim is false and the link is below. Also, did you ever think the death rate was lower for younger children because they have been mostly shielded from the pandemic because of the school closures? Here are those links:

Web Link

3. “There is no correlation between stringency of government measures (Shelter-in-Place, lockdowns) and outcomes in terms of infection spread.”

Really? Then how do you explain New Zealand? Ok they have a smaller population than the U.S. but you said “stringent Government measures don’t work.” Here is your correlation:

Web Link

4. “Even Dr. Cody, who I do not admire and feel has overreacted to the Covid "crisis", which was never anything resembling NYC”

More flawed logic. Do you think it’s possible we avoided a NY type of catastrophe BECAUSE people like Dr. Cody helped us to shut down early in CA to avoid that scenario? We had the good fortune of getting an advanced view of “what could happen” looking at the East Coast and Italy and our leaders were smart enough to take early action. Here is evidence of that(not to mention now that we have tried to open, California now leads the US in cases followed by deaths increasing-the lagging indicator):

Web Link

5. “As I said before, an increase in positivity, without more, is an increase in overall immunity, which is a great thing if we want to stop the virus”

Here is an article explaining why you wanting to go to herd immunity is an absolutely terrible idea:

Web Link


The Voice of Palo Alto
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:40 pm
The Voice of Palo Alto, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 2:40 pm
33 people like this

“You mean like Sweden, which did almost nothing, deaths fallen rapidly to zero, and is finished with the virus without destroying their economy?”

More false information. Here is what actually happened in Sweden when they did nothing:

Web Link

"But there has been another cost that we’ve seen, particularly in high schools. We’re seeing, sadly, far greater suicides now than we are deaths from COVID. We’re seeing far greater deaths from drug overdose that are above excess that we had as background than we are seeing the deaths from COVID.“

[Portion removed.] First, according to Worldometers we have over 165,000 Covid deaths and obviously still counting on a daily basis. Where is your evidence of that many suicides and drug overdoses in that same time period taking place?

Second, evidence suggests locking down saved countless lives so the cure actually wasn’t worse than the disease.

Web Link

3rd, more evidence suggests if we had locked down even earlier, more lives would have been saved:

Web Link

8. “There is however a direct correlation between stringency of government measures and economic concerns”

Yes. Of course there is an obvious downside of closing things down economically. That’s why the pandemic is a Black Swan event. All government officials were put between a rock and a hard place. Shut down the economy and save lives? Or, keep everything open and potentially let millions die of COVID? [Portion removed.] Most normal Government officials in that position would choose the former as they wouldn’t want to be responsible for possibly causing a massive amount of deaths by not locking down nor would they possibly want that many deaths on their conscience by choosing the latter.

One last note, although science and data is evolving, scientists aren’t sure yet if there actually is long lasting immunity to COVID once you are infected so becoming infected is not a good idea as Alvin suggests (“Think of reported cases as reported vaccinations”):

Web Link

[Portion removed.]

Here’s a stat that doesn’t lie, Covid may become the 3rd leading cause of death in the U.S. in 2020 and it’s only been with us for about 6 months now:

Web Link


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Aug 9, 2020 at 4:03 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 4:03 pm
14 people like this

The "fear and anxiety" is showing in this thread. Stress affects your health, and I handle stress well. There is inherent risk in everyday living.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 9, 2020 at 4:07 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 4:07 pm
36 people like this

I see data and understanding not fear and anxiety.

And I welcome the fact that people are not just simply ignoring another thousand Americans dying every day.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Aug 9, 2020 at 10:52 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 10:52 pm
24 people like this

You need to keep this in perspective. People die every day of cancer, heart disease, etc. (at a much higher rate) and you don't see the hysteria, overreaction, fear mongering. The government and the media -- they're driving this.

You can take this seriously without seriously overreacting.

Instead of obsessing about stats in far away countries (that we're not allowed to travel to) people need to strengthen their own immunity. So if you do get Covid-19, you lessen your chances of serious complications. Lose weight, quit smoking, quit drinking, eat healthy and exercise regularly. That's focusing on things you can control.

People aren't dying of Covid-19. They're dying of complications related to Covid-19 that their immune system couldn't handle. If you have underlying health issues, you have a concern. I'm in excellent health because I take my health seriously.


Are you kidding?
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:43 pm
Are you kidding?, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Aug 9, 2020 at 11:43 pm
24 people like this

Jennifer: Wrong. See Web Link


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Aug 10, 2020 at 8:58 am
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 8:58 am
8 people like this

In your own link. "Several comorbidities, such as hypertension, ischemic heart disease and obesity were present in the vast majority of decedents."

80% of the Covid-19 cases are mild. Those with comorbidities (poor health) have serious complications, and not all patients survive.

I'm hearing this from MDs and RNs (family and friends). They tell it like it is when they're not on duty at the hospital.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 9:13 am
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 9:13 am
37 people like this

"80% of the Covid-19 cases are mild."

And because of the horrible US response we have over 5 million cases.

And 20% of 5.2 million is over 1 MILLION serious cases.

And 165,000 have died.

Great that you are healthy but don't forget that we ALL have a moral obligation to protect others.


Wear a mask. Keep your distance.
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:36 am
Wear a mask. Keep your distance. , Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:36 am
33 people like this

Wear a mask. Keep your distance. It's just not that hard. Other countries have done it. We can too. The life you save may be your own or someone you love. Our community is counting on every one of us to do our part.

Parents, the soccer activity at Cubberley is not at all socially distant. If your kids are participating in camps or athletic activities, I suggest that you observe what is going on to make sure socially distancing practices are, in fact, being implemented as promised. I observe that masks are off, heads are close together whilst athletes are breathing heavily. That is not good.


Observer
Registered user
Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:56 am
Observer, Leland Manor/Garland Drive
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:56 am
30 people like this

@Alvin ""Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody pointed last week to two concerning trends countywide: an increase in cases among Latinos and a steady rise in cases among people ages 35 and younger. Among adults, the 20-to-39 age group comprises 38.4% of those who have tested positive for the virus, according to county data. Cases among Latinos have skyrocketed to 52.2%, while they make up 25.8% of the county's population."

"This is nothing to be concerned about, as younger people in the young adult age groups have extremely low death rates. 4.9% of all Covid deaths are under the age of 50. 0.0% of deaths for people under age 30."

You seem to think it's of little consequence that younger individuals are showing much higher infection rates because they are less likely to die. You choose to ignore the fact that once infected they become active Covid carriers to further spread the virus and thereby increase the exposure of older vulnerable parties.


Midtown Citizen
Registered user
Evergreen Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 11:00 am
Midtown Citizen, Evergreen Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 11:00 am
30 people like this

I go out walking in the Evergreen Park every evening. I see a lot of people walking and using Peers Park who are not wearing any masks. Its like Palo Altans have given up on the process and are now just like the morons in Florida.


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Aug 10, 2020 at 11:24 am
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 11:24 am
9 people like this

It's important not to conflate positive COVID tests to cases. Millions have tested positive and are not cases. No signs or symptoms. Cases consist of those being treated.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 11:30 am
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 11:30 am
26 people like this

We need a nationwide lockdown that is opened up only when we can test everyone and trace every positive case.

Expensive - yes.

Painful - very.

The alternative - probably over 10 million infected and 300,000 deaths AND a ruined economy.

"To save lives, and save the economy, we need another lockdown."

By Michael T. Osterholm and Neel Kashkari
Dr. Osterholm is director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota. Mr. Kashkari is president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.

Web Link


Irresponsible Reporting
Registered user
Midtown
on Aug 10, 2020 at 12:24 pm
Irresponsible Reporting, Midtown
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 12:24 pm
25 people like this

This is unethical and irresponsible reporting. The reporter Sue Dreman didn't mention the massive increase in testing! Look at the SCC Covid-19 Dashboard. The number of tests increased from about 2,000/day in mid-May to roughly 10,000/day in late July, a five-fold increase in the numbers of tests. Nor did the reporter mention that hospitalizations are FLAT (and that’s all that matters). Saying "numbers" are growing is completely misleading. Bad reporting. Contributes to the fear mongering and hysteria. PA Online you can do better.


Cheryl Phillips
Registered user
Barron Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 12:42 pm
Cheryl Phillips, Barron Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 12:42 pm
7 people like this

You can track cases to the county level for the U.S. map here -- and news organizations can also embed this map in their sites. It updates daily with data from Johns Hopkins University and the New York Times.
Web Link


Marianne Mueller
Registered user
Professorville
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:18 pm
Marianne Mueller, Professorville
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:18 pm
7 people like this

I am so tired of the two talking points one that rising case numbers mean we are testing more rising case numbers mean there are more cases it doesn't matter to me how we know that and the second talking point about young people don't die at such a high rate the point is they are vectors , I thought or perhaps naïvely had hoped that the contact tracing would give us some insight about how the community transmission is happening or where such as at Congregatesettings like backyard parties or at Summer Street yes some analysis of contact tracing would be appreciated


TS Member
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:20 pm
TS Member, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:20 pm
28 people like this

Unbelievable the number of people who buy into Trump's rhetoric and Fox news propaganda, even in "sophisticated" Palo Alto.

Absolute numbers of tests are up but so is the test positivity rate. As a matter of fact, the positivity rate has more than doubled in Santa Clara county between June and now, from less than 2% to over 4%.

The additional cases might be mild or asymptomatic carriers but they can spread the disease to other more vulnerable persons, such as their grandmas, which apparently doesn't bother many commenters here.

Hospitalizations may be flat but they could go up any time from such poor metrics, and even if they don't, no one is sure yet what the long term consequences of even "mild"cases are, not to mention that the semi lockdown we are in is a catastrophe that is untenable in the long-term.

Something drastic needs to happen. I agree with Peter Carpenter and the real experts he's referring to.


Brian
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:23 pm
Brian, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:23 pm
11 people like this

[Post removed.]


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:25 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:25 pm
20 people like this

"The good news: The United States has a window of opportunity to beat back Covid-19 before things get much, much worse.

The bad news: That window is rapidly closing. And the country seems unwilling or unable to seize the moment.

Winter is coming. Winter means cold and flu season, which is all but sure to complicate the task of figuring out who is sick with Covid-19 and who is suffering from a less threatening respiratory tract infection. It also means that cherished outdoor freedoms that link us to pre-Covid life — pop-up restaurant patios, picnics in parks, trips to the beach — will soon be out of reach, at least in northern parts of the country.

Unless Americans use the dwindling weeks between now and the onset of “indoor weather” to tamp down transmission in the country, this winter could be Dickensianly bleak, public health experts warn."

Web Link


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:30 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:30 pm
25 people like this

". Lockdowns and restrictions don't work once the virus is in the community."

Wrong. If the vast majority of people are locked down and the remaining people are widely tested and positive tests contact traced the virus can be stopped.

South Korea did this.

China did this.

Italy did this.

France did this.

It just takes political will and leadership.


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:40 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 1:40 pm
Like this comment

[Post removed due to deletion of referenced comment.]


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Aug 10, 2020 at 2:04 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 2:04 pm
Like this comment

[Post removed.]


Anonymous
Registered user
Fairmeadow
on Aug 10, 2020 at 2:24 pm
Anonymous, Fairmeadow
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 2:24 pm
34 people like this

@Jennifer wrote: "Masks provide minimal protection. If they kept people from getting Covid-19, medical professionals, essential workers, etc. wouldn't test positive."

This shows amazing ignorance and selfishness. Everyone should know by now that the point of wearing a mask is not to protect oneself (though it may do a little bit of that). Rather it is about protecting others if one is infectious without knowing it because there are many asymptomatic cases.

So Jennifer: Show some respect and consideration for those around you.


slud
Registered user
South of Midtown
on Aug 10, 2020 at 2:50 pm
slud, South of Midtown
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 2:50 pm
7 people like this

It seems clear to me that the culprit is indoor restaurant seating along with other permitted indoor activities. It's the same story throughout much of the country.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:00 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:00 pm
21 people like this

@Jennifer wrote: "Masks provide minimal protection. If they kept people from getting Covid-19, medical professionals, essential workers, etc. wouldn't test positive."

With any good defensive system you need multiple layers of protection. Example - cars have bumpers, seat belts and air bags. Each layer increases the protection. And even with all those layers people still die in automobile accidents. Do you still wear a seat belt even though some people get killed in auto accidents while wearing seat belts?

It is the same with respect to Covid. Masks are just one layer of defense. We also add physical distancing and face shields and isolation. Health professionals have masks, face shields and gowns but even those are not 100% effective.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:00 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:00 pm
Like this comment

N95 masks protect you and others. Other types of masks -- they say they're for the protection of others. I think it's both. I think for myself, and form my own opinions.


TS Member
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:19 pm
TS Member, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:19 pm
15 people like this

Masks are a good protective measure, although not 100% effective (nothing is 100% effective), as long as compliance is strong, which we do not see in the US, not even in California or Palo Alto, and other measures are also followed, specifically physical distancing as much as possible and frequent hand washing.

Italy has a very high rate of compliance with mask wearing rules and so far has not seen a resurgence of the pandemic that it successfully crushed with a very strict lockdown.


Spectator at Large
Registered user
Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:47 pm
Spectator at Large, Leland Manor/Garland Drive
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 3:47 pm
20 people like this

Young people are many times oblivious to he suggestions given on how they can protect others. I see Ivy League bound carloads of teens with no masks nor social distancing every day. They approach me (70’s) with their heads buried in a digital device. It’s scarey to think that they are not concerned about protecting the most vulnerable community members. My neighbors have parties several nights a week (teens) presumably sanctioned by their parents where they do not observe any of the precautions that have been suggested. Too many people think the guidelines don’t apply to them. It saddens me.


akaMaiNguyen
Registered user
Greenmeadow
on Aug 10, 2020 at 4:25 pm
akaMaiNguyen, Greenmeadow
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 4:25 pm
4 people like this

Hi Chris C,
I just found that Santa Clara County does provide all the data going back to March. The link, included in their "now" data page, is Web Link. This link provides raw data which can be downloaded or visualized using the on-line tool.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 4:32 pm
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 4:32 pm
14 people like this

We are all frogs in a pot of water that is getting hotter and hotter.

And the fact that the rate of heat increase slows or even stops makes no difference.

At what point will we realize that the inevitable outcome is a lot of dead frogs.


What Will They Do Next
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Aug 10, 2020 at 4:41 pm
What Will They Do Next, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 4:41 pm
15 people like this

So Brian makes some sense and challenges people to think. Post deleted. Huh ???


Grams
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Aug 10, 2020 at 9:22 pm
Grams, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 9:22 pm
10 people like this

Italy was completely locked down. You needed permission to leave your house and if caught, the police gave you a ticket. The streets were completely empty.


resident
Registered user
Stanford
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:09 pm
resident, Stanford
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:09 pm
9 people like this

I appreciate the comments from "The Voice of Palo Alto" -
Thanks also to the other readers who also provide links to data and other articles.
I would rather be informed than opinionated.


Anonymous
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:57 pm
Anonymous, Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on Aug 10, 2020 at 10:57 pm
9 people like this

I’ve not found a decisive statement on this, but had read several times and also heard on San Francisco radio news that Covid patients are being airlifted from Imperial County (borders Mexico) to Stanford Hospital (Santa Clara County). San Quentin Prison inmates are brought from Marin County to Seton Medical Center in Daly City (San Mateo County). Governor Gavin Newsom proclaims these counties as evil and Covid-laden.
What is the real situation in the Palo Alto community?
I take great care re: Covid and see most doing this - but one neighbor did a horrendously noisy yard reno (and we’ve suffered through many by neighbors) and now he noisily hosts people in the back yard. *Sigh *


Mark Weiss
Downtown North

Registered user
on Aug 11, 2020 at 9:32 am
Name hidden, Downtown North

Registered user
on Aug 11, 2020 at 9:32 am

Due to violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are only visible to registered users who are logged in. Use the links at the top of the page to Register or Login.


Peter Carpenter
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Aug 11, 2020 at 9:45 am
Peter Carpenter, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Aug 11, 2020 at 9:45 am
19 people like this

New Zealand just had the its first new cases in 102 days - four cases in Aukland.

So what did they do?

They imposed an immediate lockdown on the entire city.

"Citizens in Auckland will be expected to work from home unless they are essential workers, and schools will close, as will bars, cafes and restaurants until the end of the week.

Ardern said in a televised press conference, “We’re asking people in Auckland to stay home to stop the spread.

“Act as if you have COVID, and as though people around you have COVID.”

Web Link

New Zealand has a COVID death rate of 4/million vs the US's death rate of 500/million


Nancy Lowe
Registered user
College Terrace
on Aug 12, 2020 at 12:21 pm
Nancy Lowe, College Terrace
Registered user
on Aug 12, 2020 at 12:21 pm
Like this comment

[Post removed.]


Jim
Registered user
Midtown
on Aug 12, 2020 at 10:53 pm
Jim, Midtown
Registered user
on Aug 12, 2020 at 10:53 pm
5 people like this

Regarding the less than 11 number for zip code 94303, I suspect that is because they are all attributed to East Palo Alto. If you look at the San Mateo county data you see a very high number for EPA (650) relative to its population.


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