Riverside County health officials are reporting nearly 2,000 new cases in the last 24 hours.
The county’s case rate and positivity rate have also climbed dramatically. “Over the course of December we’ve seen cases slowly going up,” said Dr. Jennifer Chevinsky, Deputy Public Health Officer for the county’s department of public health.
The county says they’ve seen a spike in COVID cases in children. “If they’re vaccinated we’re confident that will help protect against severe disease,” said Dr. Chevinsky.
Dr. Chevinsky says they anticipate as more children do get vaccinated, they’ll see those pediatric case numbers go down. She added that across all age groups, vaccinated individuals are better protected against the new variant.
“In vaccinated individuals we’re seeing lower numbers when it comes to death, hospitalization and severity overall,” she said.
Also this week, the CDC shortened the recommended isolation time for those with COVID-19 but who are asymptomatic. That time has been cut in half from ten days to five (though those individuals are being asked to wear masks around others for another five days).
The shift in guidance comes amid omicron's rapid spread and new research, showing the virus is mostly infectious roughly two days before and three days after the onset of symptoms.