[Editor’s note: Noozhawk’s weekly COVID-19 email newsletter is delivered to subscribers on Wednesdays. You can sign up here. We are republishing the newsletters on the website so more readers have access to them.]

Welcome to Noozhawk’s Weekly COVID-19 Briefing.

I’m Noozhawk staff writer Grace Kitayama with the latest COVID-19 news in Santa Barbara County.

This newsletter is a way for Noozhawk readers to get important updates in one place.

It is emailed out every Wednesday, for free, to everyone who subscribes.

Here’s What We Know 

» In the week ending Nov. 24, the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department reported 290 cases of COVID-19 and two related deaths. 

» As of Monday, there were 32 hospitalized patients who tested positive for COVID-19 in the county, five of them in intensive-care units.

» The county recommends that those who traveled during the Thanksgiving holiday get tested three to five days after their trip. To find a testing location, visit publichealthsbc.org/testing/.

» The testing positivity rate in the county is increasing and was reported at 5.3% last week. 

» BQ1.1 is now the dominant strain of the coronavirus in the county and the state, according to the Public Health Department.

COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker

In Santa Barbara County, 69.6% of people have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19, and 58.7% are fully vaccinated with at least one booster shot, according to the California Department of Public Health.

In the county, 16.8% of residents have received their bivalent booster shot. Statewide, 16.2% of Californians have received the bivalent booster vaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 73.4% of the county population over the age of 5 have received their primary series (fully vaccinated, but not necessarily boosted) of the COVID-19 vaccination.

Got Questions?

Readers have sent us dozens of questions about pandemic-related issues. Please send yours to news@noozhawk.com and we’ll try to include them in future newsletters and Noozhawk Q&As.

Reader Resources

» Find a COVID-19 vaccine provider near you on the Vaccine Finder search function of https://www.vaccines.gov/search/. You can search for providers by location and by specific vaccine available (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Novavax and Johnson & Johnson). You can also find providers on the county website, publichealthsbc.org/vaccine, or at myturn.ca.gov. Some facilities offer walk-ups as well as appointments.

» Text your ZIP code to GETVAX (438829) for a list of vaccine providers in English, or text your ZIP code to VACUNA (822862) for a list in Spanish. 

» There are free COVID-19 testing facilities around the county.

» Find more local pandemic-related information on the Public Health Department website.

» Click here for Noozhawk’s complete Coronavirus Crisis coverage.

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Grace Kitayama, Noozhawk Staff Writer

Grace Kitayama is a Noozhawk staff writer.