The Bay Area’s summer COVID outbreak has peaked, but risks remain

California and the Bay Area continue to see a steady decline in coronavirus cases and positive test rates, suggesting the region is finally on the low side of this summer’s record highs caused by successive waves of submicron COVID-19 cases.

But even if the worst is over, the number of virus in the community remains much higher than in April and hospitalizations – a lagging indicator of infection rates – are still high.

Health officials are wary of complacency and the emergence of new immune versions of the virus that could extend the pandemic into the fall. They advise people to protect themselves from infection or re-infection through vaccinations, respirators and voluntary closed masks.

“We’re definitely in a better place, but we can’t ignore the virus,” said Peter Chin-Hong, an infectious disease specialist at UCSF. “Things can be unpredictable.”

Although the peak of cases was a few weeks ago, the change in reported numbers has made it impossible to believe the downward trend.

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