Nevada County COVID-19 cases rapidly rise due to social gatherings and workplace exposures
California Governor Gavin Newsom has indicated that additional measures, such as a statewide Stay-at-Home Order, are possible if current trends continue
Nevada County Public Health’s mission is to support community health and protect the community against disasters. Nevada County continues to have a rapid rise in COVID-19 cases, with active COVID-19 cases jumping from 307 to nearly 400 over the past week.
These are extremely challenging times, but our county has come together to address challenges before, and we know we can do it again. We can slow the spread and limit the impacts that COVID is having on everyone who lives here by continuing to practice social distancing, masking, hand washing, and minimizing social mixing between households. Even if you are mildly symptomatic, please stay home and don’t assume it is allergies or a cold. With the high transmission of COVID-19 throughout the nation, state and locally, Nevada County Public Health encourages those who traveled over the Thanksgiving holiday to behave as though they have been exposed to COVID-19 and limit their interactions with others or in public spaces.
"We anticipate another large increase in cases in a few weeks due to Thanksgiving activities and gatherings,” said Nevada County Public Health Director Jill Blake. "There is now a light at the end of the tunnel with recent news of vaccines for COVID-19, but with the current rate of community transmission, we ask that everyone continues to practice the precautions we’ve been talking about for months. We are beginning to see the impacts of widespread transmission across the state in the statewide increases in hospitalizations and the rapid decrease in the availability of ICU beds, and as a result, the State has begun talking about the possibility of another Stay-at-Home Order for California.”
Contact Tracing and Limiting the Spread
If you’ve tested positive or are a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, there are important steps you can take to help limit the spread further into our community. Because of the large number of positive COVID-19 cases in our community currently, those with a positive COVID test may not hear from the Public Health department. If you have tested positive for COVID-19, please follow the Isolation Guidance and share the Quarantine Guidance with your close contacts.
Find more detailed information about what to do if you’ve tested positive or are a close contact to someone with COVID-19 at www.mynevadacounty.com/coronavirus/exposures. 211 Connecting Point is available to help answer questions and talk through the Isolation or Quarantine Guidance with Nevada County residents. Connect with a local call center agent at 1-833-DIAL211.
Get Tested for COVID-19
Testing appointments may become more readily available at local OptumServe sites following the Thanksgiving holiday. If you are getting tested due to being symptomatic or a possible exposure to COVID-19, please remember to stay home and limit your interactions in public places until you receive your results. Schedule a cost-free COVID-19 test at www.lhi.care/covidtesting or call 1-888-634-1123.
Nevada County continues to work with the State to increase access to COVID-19 testing. Residents may schedule an appointment at other nearby OptumServe sites in other counties or may contact their primary care physician about other options.
Business Resources and the Purple “Widespread” Tier
Today, the State announced that Nevada County’s COVID-19 data continues to meet the most restrictive Purple “Widespread” Tier, keeping a reduced capacity and increased restrictions for local businesses until we begin seeing a significant decrease in new daily cases and positivity rate. The State’s tiered framework connects the level of openness of business sectors to COVID-19 conditions on the ground.
On Wednesday, the State updated its Temporary Structures for Outdoor Business Operations guidance to allow for outdoor tents to have two non-adjacent walls rather than one, allowing for air movement that helps to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Email questions about the State’s COVID-19 business sector guidance to firstname.lastname@example.org.
As community transmission continues to increase and additional protective measures to help slow the spread of COVID-19 remain in place, there are local and State resources available to small businesses. Over 2,600 gallons of hand sanitizer and 314,000 masks have been distributed to Nevada County businesses this year. Small businesses may access no-cost personal protective equipment (PPE) at www.mynevadacounty.com/ppe. The State recently announced additional resources for small businesses such as sales tax deferrals and grants for small businesses and non-profits. State resources for small businesses can be found at COVID19.ca.gov.
To support our business community and lessen business restrictions, we need to be even more diligent about limiting the behaviors that we know contribute to COVID-19’s spread. All members of the community are encouraged to consider how personal behavior can help move Nevada County back towards less restrictive tiers for our business sectors.