COVID-19 Cases Dropping Across Fresno County

Clovis City Manager Luke Serpa reported that COVID-19 cases are dropping in Fresno County. (Twenty20photos)

According to the latest state COVID-19 data, Clovis’ processed confirmed cases have steadily decreased following a surge in early January.

“We are well past the peak of the surge and dropping,” Clovis City Manager Luke Serpa said. “Still not as low as we were back in late summer, early fall, but hopefully heading that direction.”

For Fresno County as a whole, the number of new adjusted cases per 100,000 is down from 16.6 % to 12.6%. The positivity rate has dropped from 6.6% to 5.3%. And the equity quartile positivity rate is down from 8.3% to 6.8%

While the numbers are headed in a positive direction, for the county to enter the red tier, it would need to see a continued decrease in new cases per 100,000.

Fresno County still sits in the purple tier.

The state’s regional number reporting for Intensive Care Unit (ICU) availability has risen positively, increasing from 16.8% two weeks ago to 36.1%.

Low ICU availability percentages were the cause for the most recent stay-at-home order. The order has now been lifted for the region because the projection exceeded a 15% threshold.

Regarding COVID-19 vaccines, the supply continues to be limited and in total, Fresno County has administered 254,936 doses.

The main focus of the distribution continues to be food, agriculture, education and child care workers, and individuals from the age of 16 to 64-year-olds with specific medical conditions.

Added to the eligibility list are transit, government and certain utility employees.

Because the demand is high, many vaccine providers are exceedingly booked and the eligibility criteria remain fluid.

According to Serpa, as new determinations to vaccine eligibility are made, inconsistent interpretations and confusion pop-up.

“There’s somewhat inconsistent interpretations. So, it’s causing a lot of confusion,” Serpa said. “My continued recommendation is just to keep going to My Turn, the state webpage.”

Ashley Chanthaphaung, representing United Health Centers, spoke with the council, announcing that both the Clovis-Herndon and Fresno-Bullard locations offer the vaccines to 18-year-olds and up with chronic conditions.

Both locations will also continue to vaccinate patients 65 and older and county guideline eligible citizens. Testing is also available.

The Clovis site offers daily drive-thru visits from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Serpa says that although getting the vaccines distributed is a challenge, the plan to increase the number of vaccine doses in the state should happen in the next week or two.

“As the existing vaccine manufacturers gear up and increase their production…as Johnson and Johnson come online, hopefully, we see a significant increase in the number of people vaccinated a week,” Serpa said.

The city council meeting can be seen in its entirety here.

Anthony De Leon is a journalist who started his career in 2017, covering sports for the Fresno City College Rampage, earning his Associate Degree in the process. He then moved on to Fresno State, working for The Collegian serving as Sports Editor, Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in print journalism. In August, he will begin attending Reynold’s School of Journalism Master’s program at the University of Nevada, Reno.