While the president continues to publicly deny that the pandemic is cause for further concern, cases are exploding across the South and in Southern California. The Bay Area is cautiously reopening, and even as that is happening case totals continue to jump day to day in Alameda and Marin counties in particular.
Alameda County adds 242 new cases in one day: Alameda County's case count has been on the rise for a month now, but just in the last five days they've seen almost 600 new cases, with 242 added Thursday alone. Hospitalizations are also ticking up again in the county, as they have been statewide, with 89 currently in hospitals — though the county had 99 in hospital beds on May 31. (See all current Bay Area COVID stats here.)
Marin County cases rise, in addition to San Quentin's: The outbreak at San Quentin State Prison looks to be devastating and has now infected 1 in 8 inmates there as well as 40 staffers. But separately, Marin County has been reporting a more rapid daily rise in cases than it has had during the pandemic. The county had been adding just a handful (less than 10) of cases per day throughout April and May, and as of the last three days it has added between 30 and 40 cases per day.
Vacaville City Hall closes after employees test positive: The City Hall in Vacaville has closed to "walk-in traffic" after two city employees had COVID-positive tests. The two cases were apparently unrelated. [Chronicle]
There have been 40 nursing home cases in Sonoma County since June 1: All other Bay Area counties have had nursing home outbreaks at this point, and now the Chronicle reports on a tally of 40 in the past month in multiple Sonoma nursing facilities, as well as one death last weekend.
Second study seems to confirm link between Type A blood and severe COVID outcomes: As scientists continue to sort out the quirks of the coronavirus, a study involving thousands of COVID patients in Europe confirmed what an earlier, cruder study in China had found: patients with Type A blood tend to be at higher risk for severe cases, while patients with Type O blood are more likely to have milder cases. Still, some researchers call the findings "tentative." [Associated Press]
Norwegian study finds that gyms do not seem to pose great infection risk: Norway is the first country to do a randomized study looking at otherwise healthy gym-goers alongside others who don't workout at gyms, and they study found no new COVID infections tied to any gyms over a two-week period. The study participants were not required to wear masks at the gym, and they were allowed to use lockers, but they were not permitted in saunas or showers. They also had to stay six feet apart during group exercise classes, and three feet apart doing floor exercises. Only one of the 1,896 study participants ended up with a positive COVID test, and the infection was linked to their workplace. Experts say that results like this are likely to be found in regions with already low prevalence of the virus. [New York Times]