Santa Barbara County assesses increase in COVID-19 cases

Posted at 2:50 PM, Jul 16, 2021

About two weeks after the Fourth of July, Santa Barbara County is seeing an increase in coronavirus cases.

Henning Ansorg, County Health Officer, says the rise isn't surprising.

"We are seeing the expected increase in cases due to extensive traveling and mingling," Ansorg said.

County officials say that the Public Health Department is staying vigilant while assessing the increase, noting the Delta variant poses a higher threat to transmission.

At last count, Santa Barbara County reported 50 active COVID-19 cases. 50.9% of county residents are fully vaccinated.

Health officials recommend continued safety precautions, like wearing a mask indoors, avoiding crowded events, and staying home when feeling ill.

They say that the Delta variant is being traced to breakthrough cases, which occur when fully vaccinated people contract the virus. However, these cases have not been connected to serious symptoms of the disease which require hospitalization.

"We have a method of preventing severe illness and hospitalization from the COVID-19 Delta variant which we know is effective, Van Do-Reynoso, County Public Health Director, said. "That is getting vaccinated."

Updated public health information for Santa Barbara County can be found on their website.