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Decline in COVID-19 cases leads to drop in patients at some local urgent cares

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Posted at 10:48 PM, Feb 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-23 02:17:37-05

COVID-19 trends are "turning around” across California, according to Gov. Gavin Newsom.

"I don't see light at the end of the tunnel — I see bright light at the end of the tunnel," Gov. Newsom said in a press conference Sunday.

This comes as cases of COVID-19 in many parts of the state are on the decline.

Fewer cases of the disease are leading to fewer potential COVID-19 patients at places like Med Stop Urgent Care Center in San Luis Obispo.

"This past December was the busiest December we ever had and almost all of it was COVID-related. The peak of [the surge] was probably mid-January when we were seeing over 100 patients a day and almost 50 were COVID-related on a daily basis. Now, we're less than half of that," Dr. Eric Roberts, Medical Director of Med Stop Urgent Care Center, said.

Dr. Roberts says the decline could be attributed to people taking the virus more seriously.

"I think it's people doing the right thing — they're wearing masks, they're doing social distancing, they're not gathering in ways that put other patients at risk," Dr. Roberts said.

He expects to see numbers of COVID-related deaths and hospitalizations decrease as more senior citizens and high-risk individuals get vaccinated.

"I honestly believe from the true death and disability part of this is going to be a thing of the past before summer. The one exception of that is the mutation of the virus," Dr. Roberts said.

Dr. Roberts adds it's still important to remember to wash your hands, wear a face covering and continue to do social distancing to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Click here to track COVID-19 data across California.