Revelations that computer problems led to the underreporting of more than 300,000 test results in California last month led to the resignation of the state’s top health official and ballooned the number of reported cases across the state, including in Santa Clara County.
This prompted the county Department of Public Health to issue a statement late Monday that read: “As we have previously noted, because of two separate issues with the state’s CalREDIE data reporting system, the number of COVID-19 cases and related data in Santa Clara County has been underreported for the last few weeks.”
County officials said said it has been told that the state has begun providing the backlogged data, and added that “we have been expecting a large number of cases to be reported ... over the next few days.”
Based on data received from the state over the weekend, the county reported 751 new cases Monday, which reportedly includes positive test results from as far back as July 8.
The updated county dashboard today reported 12,694 total Covid-19 cases as of Monday, Aug. 10, with 25 new fatalities, for a total of 177 deaths since the outbreak began.
“We are currently analyzing the newly-received data, any remaining gaps, and what it tells us about the course of the pandemic in our county,” the county statement said.
California’s top public health officer resigned over the weekend following data-collection failures that led to an undercount of coronavirus cases as the state was reporting a downward trend in Covid-19 infections, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday.
Dr. Sonia Angell offered in a letter to step down as the director of the Department of Public Health and “I accepted her resignation,” Newsom told reporters at a presser.
Calling it a “personnel” issue, Newsom declined to say directly whether the departure of Angell less than a year into her tenure was related to computer problems that caused nearly 300,000 Covid-19 test results to go temporarily unprocessed.
Angell notified department staff of her resignation in an internal email on Sunday, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The dual roles Angell had filled as director of the Public Health Department and as the state’s chief public health officer will now be shared by two immediate successors.
California Health Care Foundation Executive Sandra Shewry was named acting public health department head, while Dr. Erica Pan, the public health officer for Alameda County, was appointed acting statewide health officer.
Johnson Hopkins University Covid-19 Resource Center reported today that California had 10,481 deaths through Monday. The state’s Covid-19 website reported 10,359 fatalities through the end of this past weekend.