As of Tuesday, Riverside County Public Health (RCPH) reported a total of 305 cases of COVID in the Idyllwild-Pine Cove community with 263 recovered and six deaths, leaving 36 currently active cases — that’s all the same as last week, which had been a tremendous 125% increase in active cases over the week before.
Anza has had 382 total cases with 292 recovered, six deaths and 84 currently active cases, increases in all categories over last week.
As of Tuesday morning, the Dashboard of the Hemet Unified School District (HUSD) reported active cases (last two weeks) of COVID at Idyllwild School as being two students and one staff member (one staff member more than last week), which is 0.98% of its combined student/staff population, a 50% increase over last week’s report. At Hemet High, 11 students and three staff members were reported as active cases (10 fewer students and the same number of staff members compared to last week), which is 0.54% of its combined student/staff population, a 38% reduction from last week’s report. Hamilton School reported three students and one staff member with active COVID, which is 0.89% of its student-staff population, the same as the last two weeks.
The HUSD Dashboard states: “Positive cases will appear on the Dashboard for 14 days from the date they are reported and then will be removed after the 14th day.” So, HUSD’s rolling Dashboard reports active cases confirmed during the previous two weeks.
County-wide, as of Tuesday, RCPH reported there have been a total of 586,447 confirmed COVID cases (only 3,057 more than last week, barely 2.6% of last week’s tremendous increase over the previous week) with 6,130 total deaths (78 more than last week, 13 fewer than last week’s increase), and with 478,858 COVID cases having recovered, leaving 101,459 active cases in Riverside County, about a 10.8% decrease over last week’s active cases.
The county currently reports 391 hospitalized COVID patients (99 fewer than last week), 78 of which are in intensive care (17 fewer than last week). On Tuesday morning, the state’s website reported 102 ICU beds available in Riverside County (15 more than last week). CDC continues to rate Riverside County as a “High” transmission area, saying “Everyone in Riverside County, California should wear a mask in public, indoor settings. Mask requirements might vary from place to place.”
As of Feb. 22, RCPH reports that in Riverside County, 17.3% of the population ages 5 to 11 are now “fully vaccinated” — while 50.4% of ages 12 to 15, about 56% of ages 16 to 24, 60.0% of ages 25 to 44, 73.1% of ages 45 to 64 and 75.9% of ages 65-plus have been fully vaccinated. Currently, the term “fully vaccinated” still does not include boosters.
As of Feb. 21, California reported 8,296,145 total confirmed COVID cases statewide (51,816 more than reported last week, but only 31.5% of last week’s increase over the previous week), with 82,873 total resulting deaths (847 more than last week, but only 57% of last week’s increase over the previous week).
As of Feb. 16, CDC’s current seven-day national moving average of daily new COVID cases was 121,665, a huge 43.5% reduction from the previous week’s seven-day moving average, which itself was a similarly huge reduction from the week before that. More than 78 million total COVID-19 cases have been reported in the U.S. to date. The Omicron variant is now predicted to be nearly all of new cases in the U.S., with Delta variant at zero.
CDC reported cases and hospitalizations in January 2022 were the highest since the pandemic began, but this month cases are trending downward. Do the vaccines work? Remember that back in December, CDC’s COVID Data Tracker showed unvaccinated adults ages 65 and older were 49 times more likely to be hospitalized than people in that age group up-to-date with their COVID vaccines, including boosters.
CDC continues to advise that vaccination, along with other important prevention strategies, continues to be the best defense against severe COVID disease. Everyone ages 5 and up is recommended to be vaccinated, with boosters for everyone ages 12 and older — specifically the Pfizer-BioNTech booster for those ages 12 to 15. CDC now recommends that people with weakened immune systems get their booster doses three months after their second dose instead of waiting five months.
CDC continues to urge everyone to 1) get vaccinated as soon as possible, with a booster shot just as soon as you are eligible for one; 2) wear a mask that covers both your nose and your mouth when in indoor public places; 3) whenever possible, stay 6 feet apart from people you don’t live with; 4) avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces; 5) continue to wash your hands often with soap and water, using hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available; and 6) consider self-testing before attending indoor gatherings, and if you test positive — or you are sick and have symptoms — don’t go.
COVID vaccinations are available in Idyllwild by appointment at Idyllwild Pharmacy (1-951-659-2135). Riverside County is not listing any place on the Hill as a future county vaccination location, but places in Hemet, San Jacinto, Banning, Beaumont, Moreno Valley, Desert Hot Springs and Palm Desert are listed. Visit https://rivcoph.org/COVID-19-Vaccine-with-Registration to schedule vaccinations through RCPH.
Also, CDC suggests visiting vaccines.gov, calling 1-800-232-0233 or texting your ZIP code to 438829 to find a vaccination site near you. Further CDC resources are available at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/COVID-data/COVIDview/.