Update on County Response to COVID-19: Health Officer on Testing & Holiday Travel, Safe Holiday Tips, Media Briefing; and COVID-19 Testing and Case Count
Nov. 19, 2020
Redwood City – The County of San Mateo continues to work to protect public health and safety in response to the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19.
The County of San Mateo’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) remains open to coordinate countywide response and communications in response to the situation. The EOC’s Joint Information Center will provide status reports every Tuesday and Thursday until further notice. Today’s report:
San Mateo County Health Advice on Holiday Travel and COVID-19 Testing
San Mateo County Health officials urge residents to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for testing and California Department of Public Health tips for healthier holiday season:
- Stay home or in your region and avoid non-essential travel
- Do not gather indoors with other households
- Contact your healthcare provider if you have a concern about your exposure.
Traditional holiday celebrations focus on gathering with family and friends. Yet this holiday season requires each of us to be aware that our actions could protect our loved ones.
“We advise against traveling and want to reinforce that testing provides only a point-in-time result,” said County Health Officer Dr. Scott Morrow. “A test during the incubation period is too early to detect the virus during the infectious period. So if you test negative before or during a trip, you may still present a risk of exposing others to COVID-19. A negative test does not clear you for visiting relatives.”
Morrow advised everyone to wear a face covering, maintain social distance and avoid gatherings even if your test result is negative.
A negative test on your return does not mean you are risk-free. The state recommends that persons arriving in California from other states or countries, including returning California residents, should self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival. The 14-day self-quarantine is the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19, regardless of a test result.
This Year’s Holiday Planning All About the 4S’s
If you’re unsure of how to make this year’s holiday season meaningful and safe, watch San Mateo County Health’s Holiday and Travel tips at https://youtu.be/nxLOUsOPzYs
Speakers from County Health, Parks and the County Manager’s Office of Community Affairs discuss the increase in COVID-19 cases in and steps you can take to make the holiday safer for you and your family. Dr Curtis Chan, deputy health officer, advises that any gatherings should be:
- Small: Limit gatherings to no more than 3 households
- Short: Limit gatherings to no more than 2 hours
- Stable: Do not participate in multiple gatherings with different households
- Safer: Outside is safer than inside
The 30-minute video covers travel recommendations, testing options and important health and safety resources and information that are available to all community members, including that County Parks will be open on Thanksgiving and will waive entrance fees on Friday, November 27
County Manager’s Media Briefing on YouTube
The Nov. 18, 2020, media briefing on the County of San Mateo’s response to COVID-19 hosted by San Mateo County Manager Mike Callagy can be viewed at https://youtu.be/hvjo9hTTB_c
Subscribe to the County’s YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/user/sanmateocountygov
COVID-19 Testing for Adults and Children Available Throughout County
Testing for COIVD-19 is one way to slow the spread, receive early care, and protect loved ones. The test is safe, easy, and available at various locations in San Mateo County at no-cost to you regardless of which testing site you choose.
Adults age 18 and over can schedule a test Tuesdays through Saturdays at the San Mateo County Event Center or at a rotating series of neighborhood locations listed below.
Testing is now available for children ages 5 to 17. Learn more and register here.
Adult Testing at Neighborhood Locations
Testing for COVID-19 is also available at mobile operations that rotate among five communities Monday through Friday for everyone 18 and older who lives or works in San Mateo County.
See the schedule below for Nov. 20 – 25 and make an appointment at least seven days in advance at Project Baseline.
North Fair Oaks, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m., Nov. 20
Stanford Parking Lot
2685 Bay Road
San Bruno, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m., Nov. 23 & 24
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
975 Sneath Lane
Half Moon Bay, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Nov. 25
Our Lady of the Pillar
565 Kelly Avenue
Remember: If you don't have access to the internet, an on-site volunteer may be able to help you register and get tested.
Information on testing options, including at the San Mateo Event Center and at neighborhood mobile sites in San Mateo County, can be found at https://www.smcgov.org/testing.
San Mateo County COVID-19 Case Count
San Mateo County Health has updated the number of positive cases to 12,878 as of Nov. 18, 2020.
County Health provides detailed information on cases by age group and date and deaths by age group. Learn more at https://www.smchealth.org/coronavirus
Residents with non-medical, non-emergency questions about the coronavirus can call 211 or 800-273-6222 at any time, day or night. Callers from landlines and cellular telephones located within San Mateo County are connected with a trained service professional from 211, a confidential service available in 180 languages.