Despite an increase in active cases, Tulare County's case rate per 100,000 residents over a 7-day period continued to decrease on Thursday.

After a one-day decrease in the number of active cases in Tulare County, the number of active cases in the county went back up on Thursday.

And another local school has received approval to reopen for in-person instruction for grades K-6 as Pleasant View School's waiver was approved.

Tulare County Health and Human Services reported there are now 598 people in Tulare County who have COVID-19, an increase of 51 over the previous day.

There was a slight increase in the number of people who recovered. The number of people in Tulare County who have recovered after testing positive for COVID-19 has reached 15,851, an increase of 31 over the previous day.

The health department reported a total increase of 84 cases on Thursday. Since March 11 there have been 16,718 COVID-19 cases in Tulare County.

The health department also reported two more deaths on Thursday, bringing the total number of deaths in Tulare County due to COVID-19 to 269. The state model projects Tulare County to have 296 deaths by November 7.

Of 265 deaths recorded by the county, 205 have been 65 or older, 56 have been between the ages of 41 and 64 and four have been under the age of 41. There have been 119 deaths related to nursing homes and 146 deaths not related to nursing homes.

One troubling number is Tulare County's R number continued its rise. Tulare County's R number is back over 1 at 1.03, still indicating the rate of increase of cases is “likely stable,” meaning the increase of cases is expected to continue at its current rate. And the average number of people one infected person would infect is back over 1 as that's what the number 1.03 represents.

Despite that troubling number Tulare County's status as far as moving from the most restrictive tier — purple — to the next least restrictive tier — actually improved somewhat. That's because Tulare County's rate of cases per 100,000 residents over a 7-day period continued to go down.

As of Thursday, Tulare County's rate was 9.8 cases per 100,000, a decrease of .5 from the previous day. In order for Tulare County to move into the red tier it must have a case rate of 7 per 100,000.

Tulare County meets the positive test standard of less than 8 percent to move into the red tier at 6.2 percent.

At the Tulare County Board of Supervisors meeting it was reported the county also meets the positive testing standard of less than eight percent in its most disadvantaged areas at 7.2 percent to move into the red tier.

On the first Tuesday Tulare County meets the standards it must maintain those numbers for two weeks. Then restaurants can open indoors at 25 percent capacity, churches can indoors at 25 percent capacity, movie theaters can open on a limited basis and schools can reopen to all students.

Pleasant View joined local schools St. Anne's, Zion Lutheran, Saucelito and Hope as schools allowed to reopen for K-6 in-person instruction.

Waivers for Roosevelt, Washington, Reagan, Lincoln, Kennedy and Jefferson Elementary Schools in Lindsay, Springville, Strathmore, Sunnyside and Rockford are still being reviewed.

The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in Tulare County has come back down to 28, but that number could be temporary based on numbers reported by Sierra View Medical Center and Visalia's Kaweah Delta Hospital.

As of Wednesday, Sierra View reported it had 13 COVID-19 hospitalizations and six patients suspected of having COVID-19. Sierra View has had 45 deaths due to COVID-19.

Sierra View reported seven of its 10 ICU beds were in use and five of its 18 ventilators were in use. Sierra View reported it now has two employees who have tested positive for COVID-19 and 51 employees who have recovered. Sierra View has had a total of 352 positive tests.

As of Wednesday, Kaweah Delta reported it had 23 COVID-19 hospitalizations of which six were in ICU.

Since March 11 there have been 2,683 cases in the Porterville area, 163 cases in Terra Bella, 243 cases in Strathmore, 674 cases in Lindsay, 46 cases in foothill-mountain communities, 142 cases in Richgrove, 28 cases in Alpaugh, 294 cases in Pixley, 95 cases in Tipton, 684 cases in Earlimart, 2,685 cases in Tulare, 1,833 cases in Dinuba, 492 cases in Farmersville, 330 cases in Exeter, 352 cases in Cutler, 602 cases in Orosi, 44 cases in Goshen, 83 cases in Traver, 292 cases in Woodlake, 13 cases in the Reedley area and 11 cases in Orange Cove.

In Visalia there have been 2,090 cases in one region, 1,377 cases in another region and 1,152 case in a third region.

There have been 68 cases reported as travel-related, 5,603 cases due to person-to-person contact and 11,047 cases are under investigation.

There have been 2,370 cases ages 0-17, 2,658 cases ages 18-25, 4,815 cases ages 26-40, 5,182 cases ages 41-64 and 1,683 cases ages 65 and over.

There have been 9,542 cases who have been Hispanic, 1,609 have been Caucasian, 302 have been Asian, 74 have been African American, 52 have been Native American, 315 have been multi-race and 4,824 are unknown.

There are 483 people who are in self-quarantine in Tulare County who are being monitored by public health officials.

With a population of nearly 470,000 people, Tulare County has had a rate of a little more than 3.56 cases per 100 residents or 3.56 percent.

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