published on August 30, 2022 - 4:25 PM
Written by Ben Hensley

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced Tuesday that COVID-19 testing positivity rates have dropped to 8.7%.

The drop reflects a 1.3% decrease over the past seven days and also marks the first time since June 14 that positivity rates have dipped below 10%, according to the dashboard and data tracking website.

Overall, Fresno County still remains slightly above the state average, with an 11.1% positivity rate. Madera and Tulare counties reported 12.6% and 10.9% positivity rates, respectively.

Kings County fell below the 10% positivity rate for the first time since June 21, with a positivity rate of 9.7%.

Statewide, California has confirmed 30,245 new cases, a 0.3% increase over the past seven days, averaging 20.7 cases per 100,000 people. The additional cases bring California’s total confirmed cases to 10,268,137 since tracking began March 3, 2020.

The department also reported 73 confirmed fatalities from COVID-19 over the past seven days, an average of 0.1 deaths per 100,000, bringing the total confirmed fatalities in the state to 94,120 since tracking for that data became available, also on March 3, 2020.

Locally, Fresno, Madera, Tulare and Kings counties have not seen a fatality from COVID-19 since Tulare County reported two fatalities the week of Aug. 10.

Health care officials continue to urge individuals to get vaccinated, with the most recent data showing that unvaccinated people are 6.9 times more likely to get COVID-19 than those who have been vaccinated and received their booster dose.

Fresno County is reporting 60.9% of people have been vaccinated with the primary series of vaccinations, with Madera, Tulare and Kings counties reporting 54.2%, 53.7%, and 45.5% respectively.

While the threat of COVID-19 continues to decline overall, health officials still urge anyone showing signs and symptoms of COVID-19 to get tested, and if positive, self-isolate and wear a mask when in most indoor settings.

Masks will still be required for those using public transit, emergency shelters, health care facilities, correctional facilities, homeless shelters and long-term care facilities, as well as other high-transmission locations.

Local jurisdictions throughout the state may still have additional requirements in addition to state guidelines.

Fresno State has lifted its masking requirements, however, university officials still highly recommend that students, faculty and staff wear surgical masks or N95 masks while indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Surgical masks are provided free of charge in several locations around campus including the library, student union building and recreation center.

Fresno City College also no longer requires masks indoors, but still recommends masks while in high-risk areas. Students attending the college must upload proof of a COVID-19 vaccination or be tested for COVID-19 once a week at approved testing sites.

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