Bay Area Health Officials Issue New COVID and Flu Guidance Ahead of Holidays

Health officers across all nine Bay Area counties issued a rare joint release urging residents to take action to stay healthy this holiday season amid surges of COVID-19, flu, and RSV.

According to the release, health officers from the Counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, San Mateo, Solano, and Sonoma, the City and County of San Francisco, and the City of Berkeley are encouraging residents to stay up to date on COVID-19 and flu vaccinations this winter. In most parts of the Bay Area, less than half of eligible residents have received the updated bivalent COVID booster shot.  

County officials also recommend that residents test for COVID before attending indoor gatherings and wear a mask in indoor public spaces. Specifically, health officers recommend a high-quality mask such as a KN95, KN94, or N95, which significantly reduces the spread of viruses and the risk of infection.

As Cupertino Today recently reported, data from County wastewater monitoring programs, including Santa Clara County’s, are indicating high concentrations of the virus that causes COVID-19, with concentration levels matching the January 2021 Omicron surge. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) currently tracks wastewater in four main regions across the state. The Bay Area and San Joaquin Valley are seeing the greatest increases.

Health Officers also warned that high levels of circulating viruses are straining the region’s healthcare systems. According to the CDPH, flu, COVID, and RSV hospitalizations are up 121 percent from a month ago.

San Mateo County residents can get the latest COVID shot at one of the County’s community clinics. Santa Clara County residents can book both flu and COVID vaccinations at Visit the California COVID-19 dashboard for more information about COVID-19 statistics in your area.