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By Miriam Raftery

Photo: Makeshift homeless tent in Lakeside

July 2, 2020 (San Diego) – Today, San Diego County’s Health and Human Services Agency released data on COVID-19 cases among homeless individuals. To date, 147 homeless people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Of those, 41 have been hospitalized, but fortunately, none have died.

Only 10.7% of those cases (12 total) occurred in homeless people in East County.  Central San Diego had the largest share, with 39.3% of the cases.

Only 16 of the 147 cases were in homeless people whose usual lodging is a shelter.

Of the rest 26 listed their usual lodging as a car or vehicle, 25 are unsheltered and living on streets or in riverbeds, 23 listed couch surfing, 43 chose other (such as hostels or hotels), and the usual lodging is unknown in 33 cases.

Nearly two-thirds are male (61.2%) while 38.8% are female.

The largest age group with COVID-19 among the homeless is those aged 50-59, which account for 27.2% of cases.  12.9% are 60-69, with just 1.4% age 70-79 and 0.7% 80 or older. Among younger homeless people, only 2.7% are age 9 or younger, 1.4% are 10-19, and 15% are 20-29.  Those in the 30s account for, 23.1% and 15.6% are in their 40s.

Over half (54.1%) of the homeless people with COVID-19 are Latino or Hispanic.  Another 27.4% are white and 14.1% are black.  Of the rest, 2.2% are Asian, 2.2% multi-racial, and 12% are of unknown ethnicity. None identified as Native American or Pacific Islander.

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