HEALTH SERVICES CAPACITY TASK FORCE: The All-Hazard Health Services Capacity Management Plan activation level has been elevated from Level 3 Partial Activation to Level 2 Escalated Activation. Over the last week, system metrics have suggested increasing stresses on health care capacity. These indicators include increased emergency department boarders, larger emergency medical services system volumes, and rising wastewater viral detections. Close system monitoring is ongoing to determine the need to escalate to a higher plan level and various mitigation tools may be activated if necessary. Maintaining masking, physical distancing, and other protective practices are vital to minimizing the level of the current patient surge, and vaccinations and boosters against COVID-19 and influenza are strongly encouraged. The Health Services Capacity Task Force Operational Group continues to meet regularly, and sector representatives will provide important updates, facilitate information sharing, and recommend coordinated plan actions to optimize health care delivery countywide.
IMPERIAL VALLEY HOMELESSNESS: At the April 12 Imperial County Board of Supervisors meeting, the Imperial Valley Continuum of Care Council Administrative Entity provided details of how they are addressing homelessness and overall accomplishments so far. Updates include a redesign of an operating Coordinated Entry System, the entity’s pandemic response (a region-wide survey to understand needs), update on current continuum of care programs, and projects such as the new Homeless Day Center that will provide services to over 700 individuals per year, Lotus Living Community (transitional housing) for Imperial Valley College students, and youth programs for those experiencing homelessness that have served 156 youth.
BEHAVIORAL HEALTH ASSESSMENT REPORT: To inform future planning on behavioral health, the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), in collaboration with its stakeholders, produced a report on California’s behavioral health system: Assessing the Continuum of Care for Behavioral Health Services in California: Data, Stakeholder Perspectives, and Implications. This report reviews data and stakeholder perspectives as DHCS implements major behavioral health initiatives, including the Behavioral Health Continuum Infrastructure Program; the response to new federal funding opportunities; and a proposal for a Section 1115 Medicaid demonstration waiver in 2022 to strengthen mental health services for people living with serious mental illness, and children and youth living with serious emotional disturbance.
COVID-19 VACCINATIONS BY ZIP CODE: San Diego County’s Weekly COVID-19 Surveillance Report shows the percentage (as of Dec. 4) of the total population of San Diego County residents who are fully vaccinated, by ZIP code of residence. Note that the data only include vaccines that have been recorded in the San Diego Immunization Registry. Some health care providers, including Veteran’s Affairs, the Department of Defense, some tribal entities, and prisons, do not report to the registry.
Naloxone Treatment: With the number of drug-related deaths growing at an alarming rate locally, the county of San Diego will soon make naloxone, an overdose reversal medication, widely available at several community-based locations and clinics throughout the county. While concerns over the increase in fentanyl-related overdoses and deaths were growing prior to the pandemic, fentanyl-related deaths increased 202% from 2019 to 2020 with more than 457 fentanyl-related deaths countywide in 2020.