Health

San Diegans Reminded to Celebrate Halloween Safely During COVID-19

Video by County News Center

County health officials are reminding the public that traditional Halloween celebrations are not advised, and large gatherings are not allowed, under the state or local health guidance.

Halloween celebrations – such as parties and in-person, door-to-door trick-or-treating – pose a high risk of spreading COVID-19 and are strongly discouraged.

“These activities involve face-to-face interactions with people from different households,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. “If a COVID-19 infection is detected among a participant, it will be very difficult to find and notify those who may have been exposed.”

Wooten recommends the following safe Halloween activities to make sure children have a fun and safe celebration:

  • Online parties/contests such as costume or pumpkin carving
  • Drive-through events and car parades
  • Dressing up homes and yards with Halloween-themed decorations
  • Movie nights with your own household or at a drive-in theater
  • Pumpkin patches where people use hand sanitizer and maintain 6-feet of distance from others

“Please be safe and stay healthy this Halloween weekend,” Wooten said. “A boo and a cackle can be great fun, but COVID is definitely not.”

A list of what’s not allowed or recommended as well as other alternatives to celebrate Halloween is found here.

State Metrics:

  • San Diego County’s state-calculated, adjusted case rate is currently 6.5 per 100,000 residents. Limit for Tier 2, the Red Tier, is 7.0.
  • The testing positivity percentage is 3.5%, placing it in Tier 3 or the Orange Tier.
  • The state’s health equity metric looks at the testing positivity for areas with the lowest healthy conditions.
  • The County’s health equity testing positivity percentage is 5.1. This metric does not move counties to more restrictive tiers but is required to advance.
  • The California Department of Public Health will assess counties on a weekly basis, with the next report scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 3.

Community Setting Outbreaks:

  • 13 new community outbreaks were confirmed on Oct. 27: four in grocery settings, three in restaurant settings, two in business settings, two in health care settings, one in a day care setting and one in a government setting.
  • In the past seven days (Oct. 21 through Oct. 27), 31 community outbreaks were confirmed.
  • The number of community outbreaks remains above the trigger of seven or more in seven days.
  • A community setting outbreak is defined as three or more COVID-19 cases in a setting and in people of different households over the past 14 days.

Testing:

  • 11,116 tests were reported to the County on Oct. 27, and the percentage of new laboratory-confirmed cases was 3%.
  • The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is 2.7%. Target is less than 8.0%.
  • The 7-day, daily average of tests is 11,268.
  • People with and without symptoms who are at higher risk for COVID-19 should be tested. Healthcare and essential workers should also get a test, as well as people who had close contact to a positive case or live in communities that are being highly impacted.

Cases:

  • 330 new cases were confirmed among San Diego County residents on Oct. 27. The region’s total is now 55,540.
  • 3,883 or 7.0% of all cases have required hospitalization.
  • 905 or 1.6% of all cases and 23.3% of hospitalized cases had to be admitted to an intensive care unit.

Deaths:

  • Four new deaths were reported in the County on Oct. 27. The region’s total is now 881.
  • Three women and one man died between Oct. 22 and Oct. 26. Their ages ranged from early 70s to mid-80s.
  • All had underlying medical conditions.

More Information:

The more detailed data summaries found on the County’s coronavirus-sd.com website will be updated around 5 p.m. today.

José A. Álvarez is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact