November 30, 2020
Eden Health District COVID-19 Bulletin
"We may see a surge upon a surge. We don't want to frighten people, but that's just the reality. We said that these things would happen as we got into the cold weather and as we began traveling, and they've happened."
Dr. Anthony Fauci, 11/29/20

The pandemic has exposed the paradox that while we are more connected, we are also more divided. . . To come out of this crisis better, we have to recover the knowledge that as a people we have a shared destination."
Pope Francis, 11/26/20
South City seniors facility builds outdoor living room for family visits
Across the Bay Area, seniors in assisted-living homes have been living in near isolation since March. Aegis Living home for seniors in South San Francisco has come up with an idea to safely bring families back together for the holidays.

Aegis Living General Manager Chris Lyons calls it an outdoor living room. “It’s a pretty thick piece of glass and a wood frame on wheels,” he explained.

It’s not perfect. but it lets seniors sit outside, warm and safe, and allows their families to visit with them in person.

Julie Lozano is spending time with her husband, Eddy. She recalled the first time they met, 60 years ago. “My cousin told me … ‘Come on! There are some visitors at home and there’s this one guy there who’s really good looking!'
Julie says Eddy’s memory isn’t what it used to be. Thursday afternoon, they sat together and enjoyed some pumpkin pie. Two of Eddy’s daughters were there too.

Liza Lozano paused to consider the outdoor visiting booth. “It works, for the purposes of being able to see him. I don’t see another way,” she said.

Visits are scheduled to last 45 minutes and the furniture and partitions are wiped clean between sessions.

Source: KPIX 5 News
By the Numbers
Alameda County: 29,476*

Contra Costa County: 24,475

Bay Area: 150,655

California: 1,208,614

U.S.: 13,457,294
Alameda County: 512*

Contra Costa County: 261

Bay Area: 1,962

California: 19,151

U.S.: 267,438
*As of 11/28/20, the most recent date for Alameda County data.
Bay Area News
Press Release, November 28, 2020
While health officials in neighboring Bay Area counties say they haven’t reached the same critical point as Santa Clara, they may also have to take similar actions soon in order to preserve remaining regional hospital capacity to treat both Covid and non-Covid medical conditions, such as severe illnesses caused by flu. A month ago, there were 262 people hospitalized with Covid in the Bay Area; as of yesterday, that number had nearly tripled to 759. "What we see in the South Bay today we may soon see across the whole Bay Area. These actions will help slow the spread of Covid in Santa Clara County and beyond." said Dr. Nicholas Moss, Alameda County Health Officer.
As of November 28, 2020, 206 patients with confirmed or suspected cases of Covid-19 are hospitalized in Alameda County, including 48 patients in ICU. The low point of hospitalizations in Alameda County in the Fall occurred on October 16, 2020. On that date, 95 patients were hospitalized with confirmed or suspected Covid-19 in the county, and 17 patients were in ICU. The peak number of hospitalizations in Alameda County occurred on July 23, 2020, when 283 patients with confirmed and suspected Covid-19 were hospitalized, including 47 patients were in ICU.
Centro Legal de la Raza is administering an emergency rental assistance program to disburse $5 million in federal funds. Funds will be used to provide rental assistance to low-income tenants in Ashland, Cherryland, San Lorenzo and other parts of unincorporated Alameda County who have lost work or income due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The application period is now open and will remain open until funds are exhausted or December 28, 2020, whichever comes sooner. Approved households can receive past due rent of up to 9 months or up to $18,000, whichever is less. Details on the program in English and Spanish are available on the website for Centro Legal de la Raza.

East Bay Times, November 30, 2020
Santa Clara, San Mateo and San Francisco counties recorded the most new cases since this news organization began tracking coronavirus infection data in April, an alarming development that officials say could warrant another lockdown. The Bay Area recorded 2,281 new cases of the virus and six new deaths, for a total of 149,004 cases and 1,962 deaths. The new cases came a day after San Mateo and San Francisco counties were moved from the “red” restriction level to the much more stringent “purple” level, joining most of the rest of the Bay Area in the most restrictive level. Marin County remains in the red tier.

Mercury News, November 29, 2020
Santa Clara County released new Covid-19 restrictions, including a three-week ban on all professional, collegiate and high school sports, a mandatory quarantine for those traveling into the region from more than 150 miles away and new capacity limits for indoor businesses. Cardrooms must temporarily close, while hotels and other facilities must be open only for essential travel or to facilitate isolation or quarantine.

SF Chronicle, November 29, 2020
San Mateo County was the last place in the Bay Area people could get a restaurant meal indoors. Until Sunday. The county, along with San Francisco, just moved into the dreaded purple tier — a category indicating a widespread resurgence of the virus. In accordance with state rules, the county banned indoor dining effective at 12:01 a.m. on Sunday, along with other indoor operations at other establishments including gyms, churches and museums.
Health News
Science, November 30, 2020
Continuing the spate of stunning news about Covid-19 vaccines, the biotech company Moderna announced the final results of the 30,000-person efficacy trial for its candidate in a press release today: Only 11 people who received two doses of the vaccine developed Covid-19 symptoms after being infected with the pandemic coronavirus, versus 185 symptomatic cases in a placebo group. That is an efficacy of 94.1%, the company says, far above what many vaccine scientists were expecting just a few weeks ago.

More impressive still, Moderna’s candidate had 100% efficacy against severe disease. There were zero such Covid-19 cases among those vaccinated, but 30 in the placebo group. The company today plans to file a request for emergency use authorization (EUA) for its vaccine with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and is also seeking a similar green light from the European Medicines Agency.

Pfizer filed an EUA request for its vaccine last week, which led FDA to announce it will convene a meeting of its vaccine advisory committee to discuss the data in depth on December 10th. Moderna hopes to provide the U.S. government with 20 million doses by the end of the year, and Pfizer says it should have 50 million doses to split between the United States and other countries that made advanced purchase agreements.

Editor's Note: Both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines require two shots. Pfizer’s booster shot will be given three weeks after the first one; Moderna’s is spaced four weeks later. Source: Washington Post.

NY Times, November 29, 2020
People with Covid-19 usually are most infectious a day or two before the onset of symptoms until about five days after, the analysis concluded. Yet patients may carry genetic fragments from the virus in their noses and throats for an average of 17 days, and, in some cases, for up to three months.

A few patients who are extremely ill or have impaired immune systems may expel — or “shed” — the virus for as long as 20 days, other studies have suggested. Even in mild cases, some patients may shed live virus for about a week, the new analysis found.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that infected people isolate for a minimum of 10 days from the beginning of their illness. The agency is considering shortening the recommended isolation period and may issue new guidelines as early as next week, according to two federal officials with knowledge of the discussions.

Editor's Note: Quarantine keeps someone who might have been exposed to the virus away from others. Isolation keeps someone who is infected with the virus away from others, even in their home.

SF Chronicle, November 27, 2020
Doctors, nurses and other health care workers are dealing with unprecedented levels of stress as they brace for a possible winter surge. Though Bay Area hospitals have never been overwhelmed during the pandemic, health care providers say the coming weeks are likely to be the worst so far, and they already are exhausted from nearly a year of anxiety and challenging work conditions.

Many fear burnout could be a factor in the region’s preparedness for this wave of patients. “It’s not that we won’t meet the challenge,” said Dr. Jahan Fahimi, an emergency room doctor at UCSF. “But it’s going to take a toll on our workforce.”

Washington Post, November 29, 2020
With more than 91,000 Covid-19 patients in their beds, U.S. hospitals are in danger of buckling beneath the weight of the pandemic and the ongoing needs of other sick people. In small- and medium-size facilities like this hit hardest by the outbreak’s third wave, that means finding spots in ones and twos, rather than adding hundreds at a time as New York hospitals did when the coronavirus swept the Northeast in the spring. “A bed is a gift right now,” said Jason Craig, regional chair for the Mayo Clinic Health System in northwest Wisconsin. “I’ll take all of them.”
Focus on Long Covid
Science Direct, November 25, 2020
Nearly 10-35% patients continue to complain of persistent symptoms most of which are neurological in nature. This compilation of symptoms has been termed, Long-Haul Covid or Long Covid. Often these symptoms can first manifest after the acute phase of the illness. The severity of the acute phase does not predict the development of this syndrome either.

Eleanor Morgan, Guardian, November 29, 2020
Long Covid is not medically definitive, but a term that describes a portion of the population struggling with symptoms for weeks or months after being infected with Covid-19, and not just those who were seriously ill. In fact, there is no evidence that links severity of infection and ongoing symptoms like fatigue.

Fatigue is the most common symptom. but breathlessness, chest tightness, brain fog, gastrointestinal issues, joint pain, headaches and vertigo are among other reported manifestations, ranging from mild to debilitating. For many, the psychological effects are profound.

CDC, Updated November 13, 2020
While most persons with COVID-19 recover and return to normal health, some patients can have symptoms that can last for weeks or even months after recovery from acute illness. Even people who are not hospitalized and who have mild illness can experience persistent or late symptoms.

Multi-year studies are underway to further investigate. CDC continues to work to identify how common these symptoms are, who is most likely to get them, and whether these symptoms eventually resolve.
60 Minutes, November 22, 2020
Covid-19 was initially thought to be a disease that was serious for the eldery and people with preexisting conditions. A potentially tough, but temporary respiratory illness for everyone else. But now, eight months into the pandemic, younger patients who have had relatively mild cases of Covid, are showing up in doctors offices and emergency rooms with mysterious and debilitating symptoms
KSL News, November 20, 2020
Nearly a year into this pandemic, the long-term side effects of Covid-19 are slowly becoming known. A Salt Lake City television interviewed 24 Covid “long-haulers,” who hope what they have to say will change minds and behaviors.
US and California Data: Last 90 Days
Covid Tracking Project, 11/29/20 (bold lines are 7-day averages)
United States
California News
SF Chronicle, November 30, 2020
California reported a record number of Covid-19 hospitalizations, reaching a somber milestone that shows the virus is more widespread than ever.
State officials reported 7,415 virus hospitalizations on Saturday, the latest data available, smashing California’s previous record of 7,170 in July. It was a dramatic leap from Friday’s figure of 6,972.

Hospitalizations in California have more than doubled in two weeks. The number of people in intensive care units due to the coronavirus is also near a record. Bay Area hospitalizations stood at 759 on Saturday — not far from the late July record of 815. The burden on hospitals is “obviously concerning,” said Dr. George Rutherford, a professor of epidemiology at UCSF. “This is one of those things we’re trying to avoid, is overwhelming hospitals.”

LA Times, November 30, 2020
How does LA County’s new plan work?
It’s not as severe as the stay-at-home order issued in March. But it does mean that most gatherings — apart from outdoor church services and outdoor political protests — were banned starting Monday morning, with the order set to last for the next three weeks, until Dec. 20. Still, it is the strictest currently in California, a sign of how serious conditions are in L.A. County.

Retail stores will remain open, albeit at a more limited capacity. The new order comes as L.A. County faces its worst crisis of the pandemic. In recent weeks, the number of new daily coronavirus cases has quadrupled, while hospitalizations and daily deaths have tripled. Officials have warned that unless transmission rates drop substantially, L.A. County is on track to run short of hospital beds within two to four weeks.

LA Times, November 29, 2020
Coronavirus cases are increasing at an alarming rate in L.A. County, with a record number of people being infected last week. Though it can take several weeks for a sick person to succumb to the virus, an uptick in deaths has already begun, with the county reporting triple the number of average daily deaths than it saw on election day.

Mayor Garcetti’s dire projection that the death toll from Covid-19 in Los Angeles County will reach 11,511 by the end of the year assumes that the virus will continue to spread at the same rapid rate it has shown in the last two weeks, so that by the end of the year an additional 180,000 people will have become infected, roughly 2% of whom will die of Covid-19.

But it is not likely that spread will continue unabated for the next several weeks, given that county officials have imposed new restrictions. It’s likely that if transmission of the virus slows in the coming days, there will be fewer fatalities than Garcetti foretold. But hundreds, if not thousands, could still die. Any changes in behavior Angelenos make now to reduce transmission of the coronavirus probably won’t bend the curve on hospitalizations for a few more weeks, because people infected last week can still end up in the hospital.

Orange County Register, November 29, 2020
California is on the cusp of a mass campaign that faces colossal complexities, even beyond the nuts-and-bolts logistics of having enough cold storage for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines once they finally arrive. “A critical challenge facing vaccine distribution efforts will be funding,” said the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation, which examined 47 state vaccine rollout plans. “To date, only $200 million has been distributed to state, territorial and local jurisdictions for vaccine preparedness, though it is estimated that at least $6-8 billion is needed.”

LA Times, November 29, 2020
Dozens of demonstrators converged outside the Echo Park home of Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer on Sunday afternoon to express their displeasure with a new round of Covid-19 restrictions that will take effect Monday. Carrying signs and waving flags, the protesters called on Ferrer to “Open L.A.” and chanted, “No science. No data. No shutdown.” Few of the 50 or so demonstrators were wearing face masks.
US News
CNN, November 30, 2020
As millions of people in the United States travel back home from the Thanksgiving holiday, daily Covid-19 hospitalizations are inching closer to 100,000 -- the highest they've ever been.

Now health experts are asking those who gathered with people outside their households to get tested. "If your family traveled, you have to assume that you were exposed and you became infected," White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx told CBS on Sunday. She also recommended those older than 65 get tested immediately if they develop any symptoms.

Associated Press, November 30, 2020
Nearly 1.2 million people passed through U.S. airports Sunday, the greatest number since the pandemic gripped the country in March, despite pleas from health experts for Americans to stay home over Thanksgiving.

NPR, November 29, 2020
The number of hospitalizations from the coronavirus set yet another record this weekend, as cases continue to surge and public health officials warn of a worsening outlook with the holiday season just weeks away.

"We may see a surge upon a surge," Dr. Anthony Fauci told ABC's This Week on Sunday. "We don't want to frighten people, but that's just the reality. We said that these things would happen as we got into the cold weather and as we began traveling, and they've happened."

Kaiser Health News, November 30, 2020
A wave of Covid-related closures is starting to wash across America, reducing access to care in areas already short on primary care doctors.
Although no one tracks medical closures, recent research suggests they number in the thousands.

survey by the Physicians Foundation estimated that 8% of all physician practices nationally — around 16,000 — have closed under the stress of the pandemic. That survey didn’t break them down by type, but another from the Virginia-based Larry A. Green Center and the Primary Care Collaborative found in late September that 7% of primary care practices were unsure they could stay open past December without financial assistance. And many more teeter on the economic brink, experts say.

Politico, November 30, 2020
Ron Klain is on the verge of returning to the White House as chief of staff to President-elect Joe Biden as the country battles a raging pandemic far more deadly and pervasive than Ebola ever became. As one of the key architects of the incoming administration’s Covid-19 plan, Klain’s experience is already shaping how the next administration will respond.

Four elements of the plan are especially crucial:
1. Managing the pandemic response is a full-time job.
2. Set appropriate expectations … and let the scientists do the talking.
3. Hospitals need protective gear and federal support to handle a new disease.
4. A global pandemic demands a global response.

Washington Post, November 27, 2020
From Nov. 8 to 14, the NFL administered 43,148 tests to 7,856 players, coaches and employees. Major college football programs supply dozens of tests each day, an attempt — futile as it has been — to maintain health and prevent schedule interruptions. Major League Soccer administered nearly 5,000 tests last week, and Major League Baseball conducted some 170,000 tests during its truncated season.

SF Bay Area Nurse Jane Sandoval, meanwhile, is a 58-year-old front-line worker who regularly treats patients either suspected or confirmed to have been infected by the coronavirus. In eight months, she has never been tested. She says her employer, California Pacific Medical Center, refuses to provide testing for its medical staff even after possible exposure.
CA Education News
SF Chronicle, November 29, 2020
Without concrete improvements to remote programs, parents across the region say they feel as though they have been made to choose between their families’ safety and their children’s education. In many cases, families said they decided to enroll their children in hybrid programs, but have them attend virtual classes only, while staying home sick on days of in-person instruction.

Some school districts in the Bay Area are continuing Zoom distance learning, often taught by teachers who have medical concerns that prevent them from returning to the classroom. Other districts, including San Francisco Unified, are making plans to return to school in 2021.

In Tiburon, Reed Union Superintendent Nancy Lynch said the district would not provide an alternative remote curriculum because it would pull resources from its core program. She told parents that remote students would not be allowed to Zoom into in-person classes because they may divide the teacher’s attention, but they would be able to check in with a teacher at the end of the day.

Mercury News, November 30, 2020
Even before the pandemic, the most recent local government survey found that homelessness increased 31% in Santa Clara County and 21% in San Mateo County from 2017 to 2019. About a third of the nearly 1,000 homeless people in its shelters on any given night are children.

“Since March, when the coronavirus closed schools and increased our clients’ sense of uncertainty, the children in our shelters have exhibited increased stress,” said Jeannie Leahy, LifeMoves’ grants director. “Many are having difficulty focusing on schoolwork. For students with learning differences and those who
are non-native English speakers, the situation is even more difficult because they are not receiving the additional support typically provided by their schools.”

Sacramento Bee, November 29, 2020
Caelan Bonniksen is a spirited three-sport athlete without seasons to play, without teammates and with a lot of life experiences on hold. The El Dorado High School senior is frustrated and pained, as are hundreds of thousands of his teenage peers across California due to how the coronavirus pandemic continues to cast a considerable shadow over education.

Bonniksen created an Instagram page on Nov. 21 called “CIF_LetUsPlay” and got the word out that he wanted to share the concerns of paused seasons and set up a rally on Sunday afternoon in front of the California Capitol in Sacramento. About 200 people — student-athletes, parents, coaches and more — showed up with signs reading, “Let Us Play,” “Kids Need Sports” and more.

Parents and their kids made it clear that they are frustrated with Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office, specifically that there are no clear youth sports guidelines, that they are tired of hearing guidelines will be posted “soon.”
US Education News
NY Times, November 30, 2020
All this fall, as vehement debates have raged over whether to reopen schools for in-person instruction, teachers have been at the center — often vilified for challenging it, sometimes warmly praised for trying to make it work.

But the debate has often missed just how thoroughly the coronavirus has upended learning in the country’s 130,000 schools, and glossed over how emotionally and physically draining pandemic teaching has become for the educators themselves.
In more than a dozen interviews, educators described the immense challenges, and exhaustion, they have faced trying to provide normal schooling for students in pandemic conditions that are anything but normal. Some recounted whiplash experiences of having their schools abruptly open and close, sometimes more than once, because of virus risks or quarantine-driven staff shortages, requiring them to repeatedly switch back and forth between in-person and online teaching.

Others described the stress of having to lead back-to-back group video lessons for remote learners, even as they continued to teach students in person in their classrooms. Some educators said their workloads had doubled.

NPR, November 30, 2020
Across the country, fully virtual K-12 charter schools have experienced a pandemic-induced "surge," as one sector observer put it. K12 Inc., one of the biggest in the business, has reported a 57% enrollment increase, taking it up to 195,000 students; Connections Academy, another heavy hitter, has reported a 41% jump, and the list goes on.

Virtual charter schools have been around for a couple of decades. In that time, they've been both relatively niche and highly controversial. Groups representing charter schools, like the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, have publicly questioned "whether virtual schools should be included in the charter school model at all."

NPR, November 29, 2020
Just 10 days after closing New York City's schools because of rising coronavirus cases, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sunday that the nation's largest school district will begin a phased reopening next week. On Dec. 7, buildings will reopen for elementary school students and on Dec. 10, District 75, which serves students with disabilities, will reopen.
Students can only return if they have already signed up for in-person learning.

Washington Post, November 28, 2020
Bars in Rhode Island must close for two weeks starting Monday. Gyms, casinos, movie theaters and bowling alleys will also go dark. But not Scituate High School — or most other public schools in the state, where Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) has made in-person instruction a priority even as coronavirus cases soar.
Family survives Covid-19 and vows to raise awareness
When Charles and Kirstin Johnson-Nixon pledged a life together for better or worse, the Minneapolis couple had no idea that the coronavirus would write their shared life's most painful chapter.

Kirstin, a social worker who helps counsel teen parents in high school, says she and her husband tested positive for the coronavirus in early May. Soon afterward, their eldest son, Caleb, lost his sense of smell and tested positive. Then Raphael, one of the couple's 14-year-old twins, came down with a fever and minor headaches. He, too, tested positive.

Kirstin says she and her husband didn't require hospitalization, but the fatigue, coughing and body aches were almost unbearable. Kirstin's mother, Alberta Johnson, tested positive after she was found unresponsive in her Minneapolis home in early May.

And while Kirstin and Charles were recovering in late May, they received a call they hoped would never happen. Kirstin's father, William Johnson, who had also tested positive for coronavirus in May, had been placed on a ventilator.

"My grandpa was in the hospital for 50 days and there were certain points where he wasn't speaking to anyone," Caleb said.

Caleb and his family had good reason to be concerned. Black people in the United States are dying at more than double the rate of White people, according to the Covid Tracking Project.
The same data shows Native Americans and Latinos are also dying at significantly higher rates than Whites and Asian Americans.

Charles feared the virus would rob him of the opportunity to watch his children become adults.

"That was my biggest fear. I lost my father when I was young. And one of my goals was to make sure I was going to be here for my kids," Charles said. "The idea that this (virus) could turn and take me away from them was the hardest thing to deal with. God kept me here for my boys. I prayed more during that time than ever, and I still do."

Charles and Kirstin say their work isn't done. They are determined to raise awareness and advocate for testing. "It makes you want to yell out and be on a mission to bring awareness to people and say, 'Hey, we have to take this serious because we're already dealing with all the other problems that we have to deal with being Black in this country,'" Charles said. "2021 will give everyone an opportunity to rethink how they do things, change how they do things if they need to. 2020 will be gone soon, thank God!"

Source: WYFF TV
International News
Wall Street Journal, November 30, 2020
The coronavirus has resurged in Europe’s nursing homes, killing thousands of older people and forcing facilities to make a difficult choice: impose another period of crushing isolation or risk greater exposure to the virus.

Nursing home outbreaks have dashed hopes that their residents could be shielded from the virus when it is spreading quickly in society at large. As cases soared across Europe this fall, nursing home personnel and visitors brought the virus in with them despite strict sanitary rules, infecting tens of thousands of residents, who are most vulnerable to the pathogen because of their age and frailty.

Countries such as France, Belgium and the Netherlands that closely track nursing home deaths have recorded more than 9,000 since the beginning of October. Other nations such as Italy and Spain that don’t yet have data on nursing home deaths have reported outbreaks in hundreds of facilities in recent weeks.

Vallarta Daily, November 27, 2020
Mexico’s Health Ministry on Friday reported 12,081 additional cases of the novel coronavirus, a new daily record since the pandemic began, and 631 more deaths in the country, bringing the official number of infections to 1,090,675 and the death toll to 104,873.

Health officials have said the real number of infections is likely to be significantly higher. Early in the pandemic, Mexico’s government suggested cases are eight times higher than those being reported because of a lack of testing in the country.

Bloomberg, November 29, 2020
Hong Kong reported 115 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, 62 of which were linked to a cluster involving dance studios. There were 24 infections of unknown origin and six were imported, Department of Health official Chuang Shuk-kwan said at the daily Covid-19 briefing. The number of cases linked to the dance studios is now 479.

CNN, November 29, 2020
Experts have warned that the pandemic could lead to a mental health crisis. Mass unemployment, social isolation, and anxiety are taking their toll on people globally.

In Japan, government statistics show suicide claimed more lives in October than Covid-19 has over the entire year to date. The monthly number of Japanese suicides rose to 2,153 in October, according to Japan's National Police Agency. As of Friday, Japan's total Covid-19 toll was 2,087, the health ministry said. Japan is one of the few major economies to disclose timely suicide data -- the most recent national data for the US, for example, is from 2018. The Japanese data could give other countries insights into the impact of pandemic measures on mental health, and which groups are the most vulnerable.

Reuters, November 29, 2020
Across Europe, people are snapping up old bangers, clunkers, Klapperkasten, tacots and catorci, desperate to avoid buses and trains but wary of splashing out on a shiny new motor in uncertain economic times. “Public transportation is terrific here, but with the Covid and all that, it’s better to avoid it,” said Robert Perez, who recently moved to Spain’s capital Madrid from Argentina.

Data provided to Reuters by research firm IHS Markit and online car market AutoScout24 showed there has been a marked upward shift in registrations of older cars across Europe, as well as a spike in internet searches for ageing vehicles. The surge in interest in used cars is neither good news for struggling mass transit networks nor the environment as dirty old cars appear to be more in demand than new electric vehicles.
Andrew Joseph, STAT, November 29, 2020
Thanksgiving is over, and public health officials’ persistent warnings that large celebrations and travel could douse accelerant on out-of-control Covid-19 spread have passed. But whether their warnings were heeded — and what kind of impact Americans’ decisions might have had — won’t be clear for a few weeks.

It will take a few days for those who got infected to start feeling sick, to get tested, and to get their results back. It will be two weeks or so before people who get sick enough to need hospital care show up in emergency departments. And it could be another two weeks after that before the seriously ill die, and a bit longer before those deaths are recorded in official tallies. It’s why experts describe metrics such as hospitalizations and deaths as lagging indicators — the results of transmission that occurred weeks prior.

What’s more, spread could compound in the interim. If people contract the coronavirus at Thanksgiving, within a few days they could be passing it to their colleagues, their teammates, and others — all before they show symptoms, and even if they never show symptoms.

Axios, November 30, 2020
Young, healthy people will be at the back of the line for coronavirus vaccines, and they'll have to maintain their sense of urgency as they wait their turn — otherwise, vaccinations won't be as effective in bringing the pandemic to a close.

Christina Maxouris, CNN, November 28, 2020
As the nation grapples with the devastating fall Covid-19 surge, Norton County, Kansas, has become emblematic of the pandemic's deadly grip on Midwestern rural communities that were spared by earlier surges. But it also offers a glimpse into the diverse opinions that persist around the virus and the patchwork of safety measures used to curb its spread.

For Norton County, home to less than 6,000 people -- a community of ranchers and farmers, as the locals say -- the coronavirus was nothing but a nuisance for months after the pandemic's start.

"If you ever tried to say, I believe in science, so I think we need to treat this like a communicable disease .. and whether I like Trump or not, I think we should be wearing masks, you would be ostracized," said Jeff Johnston, who grew up in Norton. "You either fit in or you're heavily branded the unusual person." His sister doesn't think so. "I don't feel like it's Democrat or Republican wearing a mask. I don't think that has anything to do with it at all," she says, adding she believes President Donald Trump "did as good as anybody with warning the people once he realized how serious of an issue it was."

Lauren Hines, STAT, November 27, 2020
My painful excursion into the world of dueling infections started on a Tuesday afternoon with a scratchy throat and a mild-yet-annoying cough. I chalked it up to fall in Kentucky, where sunny afternoons in the mid 70s can be followed by freezing temperatures at night. On Wednesday morning, I was having coughing fits that made me dizzy. I went to see my doctor. As a precaution, I was tested for strep, influenza, and Covid-19. I was shocked when the nurse let me know that I had tested positive for the flu, and I left with a prescription for Tamiflu and instructions to stay home for a week.

Then I got a call that I had also tested positive for Covid-19. I should have expected that news, because the night before I had lit a pumpkin-scented candle but didn’t realize until later that I hadn’t smelled its fragrance. I was angry, and still am, that the response to a worldwide pandemic has become so deeply politicized in the U.S. and that even though I took every precaution, it still wasn’t enough.
We are proud to partner with the East Bay Community Foundation in publishing this bulletin. Through donations to its Covid-19 Response Fund, the EBCF provides grants to East Bay nonprofit organizations delivering essential services to those most impacted by the economic fallout from the pandemic.
East Bay Focus
Alameda County
Widespread (Purple)
  • 7.2 Adjusted case rate of new Covid-19 cases per day per 100,000 residents
  • 3.0% Positivity rate
Contra Costa County
Widespread (Purple)
  • 10.3 Adjusted case rate of new Covid-19 cases per day per 100,000 residents
  • 4.1% Positivity rate
by day as of 11/28/20
by day as of 11/28/20
Over the last seven days, Alameda County officials have reported 1,991 new coronavirus cases, which amounts to 121 cases per 100,000 residents.
Over the last seven days, Contra Costa County officials have reported 1,793 new coronavirus cases, which amounts to 158 cases per 100,000 residents.
Top 10 Locations of Cases in Alameda County, as of 11/28/20. Alameda County does not publish cases per 100,000 in the last 14 days by city.
Oakland: 10,678

Hayward: 4,461

Fremont: 2,219

Eden MAC: 1,930

San Leandro: 1,694

Livermore: 1,344

Union City: 1,197

Berkeley: 1,117

Castro Valley: 819

Newark: 812
Top 10 Locations of Cases in Contra Costa County plus (in parentheses) cases per 100,000 in last 14 days, as of 11/30/20
Richmond: 4,390 (380)

Antioch: 3,181 (280)

Concord: 3,087 (237)

Pittsburgh: 2,579 (321)

San Pablo: 2,042 (618)

Bay Point: 1,132 (296)

Brentwood: 1,046 (240)

Walnut Creek: 931 (198)

Oakley: 807 (311)

San Ramon: 662 (198)
East Bay Resources

In their November 25, 2020, podcast, Dr. Michael Osterholm and host Chris Dall discuss the latest activity in the US, Europe's experience with recent surges, more promising preliminary results regarding vaccines, how vaccine distribution might be prioritized, and the safety of caroling as Christmas approaches.
Purple (Widespread) Tier Restrictions Summarized
All Bay Area counties are in the state's Purple (Widespread) Tier for activity and business reopening, with the exceptions of Marin, San Francisco and San Mateo Counties that are in the Red (Substantial) Tier.

Below is a list of the restrictions for counties in the Purple Tier. Please view on a desktop or laptop computer. Source: California Dept. of Public Health

For East Bay specific reopening guidance, see

Outdoor playgrounds

Hair salons & Barbarshops

All Retail

Shopping Centers

Museums, Zoos & Aquariums

Places of Worship

Movie Theaters

Hotels & Lodging

Gyms & Fitness Centers



Bars & Breweries (where no meal provided)


Professional Sports

Amusement Parks
Outdoor only with modifications, maximum 3 households

Open with modifications

Open indoors with modifications

Open indoors with modifications, maximum 25% capacity

Open indoors with modifications, maximum 25% capacity, common areas and food courts closed

Outdoor only with modifications

Outdoor only with modifications

Outdoor only with modifications

Open with modifications

Outdoor only with modifications

Outdoor only with modifications

Outdoor only with modifications



Open without live audiences

New California Mask Order Summarized
All Californians are now required to wear face coverings whenever they’re outside their homes, with a few exceptions. Source: California Dept. of Public Health
Residents must cover their faces unless they are:

  • in a car alone or solely with members of their own household.

  • working in an office or in a room alone.

  • actively eating or drinking provided that they are able to maintain a distance of at least six feet away from persons who are not members of the same household or residence.

  • outdoors and maintaining at least 6 feet of social distancing from others not in their household. Such persons must have a face covering with them at all times and must put it on if they are within 6 feet of others who are not in their household.

  • obtaining a service involving the nose or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service.

  • workers who are required to wear respiratory protection.

  • specifically exempted from wearing face coverings by other state guidance.
Californians are only exempt from the order if they:

• are younger than age 2.

• have a disability or medical/mental health condition that prevents them from wearing a face covering.

• are hearing-impaired or are communicating with someone who is.


The new state mandate doesn’t specify any particular kind of face covering — all that’s required is that the nose and mouth are covered. “A cloth face covering may be factory-made or sewn by hand or can be improvised from household items such as scarfs, T-shirts, sweatshirts, or towels,” the state says.

Monday’s mandate replaces the one issued in June, which had required Californians to wear face coverings only in specified settings that were considered high risk, such as when shopping, taking public transportation or seeking medical care.
Mask On Eden Area
Working in collaboration with the Alameda County Public Health Department, the Cities of Hayward and San Leandro, and the Castro Valley and Eden Area Municipal Advisory Councils, the District has printed “Mask On” posters for each city and community in the Eden Health District area. The posters are free and intended for businesses, health clinics, schools, churches, public agencies and nonprofit organizations to display in their entrances.

“Wearing masks in public or any gatherings, including events with friends and extended families, is essential for slowing the spread of the virus,” stated Eden Health District Director Pam Russo. “While we are seeing signs of progress in California, Alameda County remains a Covid-19 'hot spot' in the Bay Area. Please wear a mask to protect yourself while protecting others.”
The public is welcome to download and print or share “Mask On” posters from the District’s website. Posters are available in English, Spanish and Chinese languages.

Posters may also be retrieved during business hours from the lobby of the Eden Health District office building located at 20400 Lake Chabot Road, Castro Valley. Posters for the City of Hayward are also available from the Hayward Chamber of Commerce located at 22561 Main Street, Hayward.
Public Education Covid-19 Flyers
Contra Costa County Health Services has recently published highly informative flyers addressing the risks of becoming infected in certain settings and activities.
Eden Area Food Pantries
We have posted information on food pantries and food services in the cities of Hayward and San Leandro and unincorporated Alameda County including Castro Valley and San Lorenzo. You can access the information here on our website. Alameda County has also released an interactive map listing food distributions and other social services. 
Your feedback is welcome. Please share the Bulletin.
The Eden Health District Board of Directors are Gordon Galvan, Chair, Mariellen Faria, Vice Chair, Roxann Lewis, Pam Russo and Thomas Lorentzen. The Chief Executive Officer is Mark Friedman.

The Eden Health District is committed to ensuring that policy makers and community members receive accurate and timely information to help make the best policy and personal choices to meet and overcome the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Each bulletin includes a summary of the top health, Bay Area, California, national, education and international news on the pandemic plus links to a diverse range of commentary and analysis. We publish the Bulletin on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, unless the day fall on a public holiday.

Please share our bulletin with your contacts. Please click here to subscribe.

We welcome your feedback on our bulletin. Please contact editor Stephen Cassidy.