Two new cases of COVID-19 were reported today. A previous case was reassigned to the person’s county of residence. With that, Humboldt County’s total confirmed case count now stands at 561.
In related news, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) yesterday updated its definition of a “close contact.” CDC now defines close contact as “Someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to test specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.” Previous criteria defined close contact as 15 minutes of continuous rather than cumulative contact within 6 feet.
Humboldt County Health Officer Dr. Teresa Frankovich said that Public Health’s contact tracing teams have always considered the totality of someone’s interactions with an infected person to determine if they should be quarantined because of a suspected exposure. “This refined CDC definition is helpful as it provides clear language reflecting new COVID-19 transmission research findings,” she said.
Dr. Frankovich pointed out that this new language illustrates one of the reasons why the state has not yet allowed live performances, events and festivals that bring people into contact for short interactions over long periods.
“This change really highlights how the science is constantly evolving as we learn about this virus.” Dr. Frankovich said. “One of the things we do know is that the surest way to keep our businesses open and children in school is to follow state and local orders and refrain from hosting or attending live events, get-togethers or any other gathering that brings more than three households together.”
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