The County of Ventura Public Health Department is urging the community to continue adhering to safety guidelines aimed to reduce the spread of COVID-19, Spring Break.
“While our metrics are improving and we are close to entering the Orange Tier, we are issuing this plea to remind everyone to not let our guard down, especially during Spring break. We need to continue to bring our numbers further down as we approach a significant milestone in the pandemic: almost 80,000 Ventura County residents have tested positive for COVID. The 15 new deaths reported so far this week are a reminder that COVID is still having a significant impact in our community. Our thoughts and prayers are with these 15 families and the almost 1,000 families that have lost a loved one during the pandemic,” said Public Health Director Rigoberto Vargas.
When considering how to spend Spring Break, the community is asked to make efforts to stay local.
Continue to practice safety guidelines including wearing a mask and practicing social distancing.
“We must remain diligent and continue to take precautions to prevent the spread of the virus. If we are able to prevent another wave of increasing infections, we will soon be able to realize the profound benefits of our mass vaccination efforts in reducing spread and, most importantly, preventing COVID hospitalizations and deaths,” said Public Health Officer Robert Levin.
Residents should continue to avoid all non-essential travel outside of California unless they are traveling for essential purposes. A Travel Advisory remains in effect in California. The advisory includes the following information:
• Except in connection with essential travel, Californians should avoid non-essential travel outside of California, to other states or countries. Avoiding travel reduces the risk of virus transmission, including by reducing the risk that new sources of infection and, potentially, new virus strains will be introduced to California.
• Non-essential travelers from other states or countries, regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status, are strongly discouraged from entering California, and should adhere to the quarantine procedures set forth below.
• Non-essential travelers should get tested 3-5 days upon arrival into California and stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel, even if their test is negative.
• Non-essential travelers who don’t get tested should stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.
The County of Ventura is in the Red Tier of the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy. In this tier, the State’s gathering guidance allows for a private gathering to occur indoors with up to three separate households, with masking and distancing required at all times and limited to two hours. Outdoors is still safer than indoors. People who are fully vaccinated can gather indoors, without required masking and distancing, with either two other households of people who are fully vaccinated or with one other household of unvaccinated/partially vaccinated people, unless any of those people or anyone they live with is at risk for serious illness from COVID-19.
People are considered fully vaccinated:
2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series (the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines), or
2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine (the Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine).
If it has been less than 2 weeks since your shot or you still need to get your second dose, you are NOT fully vaccinated.
Gatherings, even with people you know who have no symptoms and who have tested negative, can still result in spread of the virus to many people. The risk of spread increases when people are not diligent about consistently and correctly wearing face masks or keeping their physical distance an when people gather indoors.
“It’s good news that cases are coming down, but we can’t let down our guard. We can easily go back to a spike in cases if we are not cautious. We must remain steadfast in our commitment to help one another move forward. This can only happen if we all do our part,” added Dr. Levin.
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