Humboldt County remains in the red tier for Covid-19 restrictions

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HUMBOLDT COUNTY, Calif. (KIEM) — Despite a warning from the state about a possibility of moving back to the purple tier for Covid-19 restrictions, Humboldt County remains in the red tier this week.

“We do strongly feel that our metrics have reflected that our case rates are stable and we should remain in the red tier,” according to Humboldt County Health Officer Dr. Ian Hoffman.

Humboldt County currently sits in the red tier with an adjusted case rate of 6.4 per 100,000 residents and a positivity rate of 2.3%.

“This is still early recovery from the surge, and variants still pose a very real threat,” Hoffman adds.

Since the surge, the hospitalization rate has gone down with minimal local ICU admissions in past weeks. The statewide ICU capacity has returned to pre-surge levels.

“It gives us security that we’re on the road to recovery after what was a very difficult winter,” Hoffman says.

As far as vaccinations, 28% of the eligible population has gotten at least 1 dose of a Covid-19 vaccine. Public Health is in the planning stages for Blue Shield to come in as third party administrator in early April.

“Our Public Health team is working closely with our providers in the network to get them ready for this transition and to help facilitate whatever needs come up throughout the transition to the TPA,” according to Hoffman.

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Another encouraging development, the state released guidance for outdoor live performance venues. They can reopen with people in attendance as long as masks are worn at all times and other safety measures are implemented.

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“So even while we’re allowing larger gatherings outdoors, the basic tenants will remain. With time, we’re hopeful that even those can be loosened, but we need to take this one step at a time,” Hoffman adds.

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The state continues to add more groups to phase 1B for vaccinations. Hoffman says updated information will be released later this week.