Update Sept. 9, 2020: With cases up to 286, Dr. Wooten has ordered SDSU students to shelter in place through Sept. 14
By Miriam Raftery
September 4, 2020 (San Diego) – Dr. Wilma Wooten, San Diego County’s pubic health officer, today urged San Diego State University undergraduates to “stay home within their living units this weekend” after 184 students tested positive for COVID-19 in 14 campus-related groups in housing and gathering locations since Aug. 24. “If you have been to parties and social events, you need to get tested, now. And isolate until you get results,” Dr. Wooten added.
On Wednesday, SDSU announced cancellation of all in-person classes and labs for at least two weeks due to 64 cases of the coronavirus diagnosed. Today, the county reported another 120 confirmed or probably COVId-19 cases among SDSU students.
Countywide, 453 positive cases were also reported today, the most since Aug. 7. Six new outbreaks in community settings were confirmed on Sept. 3, including a hair salon/barbershop, a hotel/resort/spa, a business, a restaurant and two grocery stores. There have been 22 community outbreaks in the past week. Most of those infections took place before the wave of business reopenings and before SDSU resumed classes. The positive test result rate was 6%, up from the 14 day average of 4% positive tests.
“I’m asking San Diegans to take a look at their individual actions and if necessary, adjust their behaviors to help ensure we remain safe and moving in the right direction,” Dr. Wooten said.
The state will be releasing its next report on Tuesday. San Diego is currently in Tier 2, the Red Tier. If the County can reduce its number of new cases it could drop down a tier which would allow some businesses to reopen or increase capacity. If the county moves in the wrong direction it could spur the state to order some businesses to shut down again or to close down in-person learning at schools.
Testing is available over Labor Day weekend. Call 2-1-1 for information on free COVID-19 testing sites.
SDSU has cancelled athletic events as well as classes temporarily due to the 184 students with COVID-19. The interfraternity Council voted Aug. 20 to require that all IFC recruitment events and banned all social events, formal or informal, at chapter facilities or in a satellite house to prevent spread of the disease. The campus has hired security guards to patrol the area and make sure guidelines are enforced.