How to Navigate Covid in California Right Now

California is undeniably in the midst of a new wave of Covid-19. The number of people testing positive for the coronavirus across the s...


California is undeniably in the midst of a new wave of Covid-19.

The number of people testing positive for the coronavirus across the state each day has more than tripled since the start of the month, according to the New York Times tracker. To blame is Omicron, the extraordinarily contagious variant that will most likely continue to spread at a rapid rate.

But how exactly to react to these growing numbers is more complicated than in the past. As more Californians catch the coronavirus, the number of hospital admissions with Covid-19 has increased only slightly, if at all, in recent weeks.

Vaccines remain very effective in preventing serious illness, and Omicron seems less likely than previous variants to make people sick enough to require hospital care. (Learn more from my colleagues on Omicron Infection Severity Research.)

That doesn’t mean we can completely forget about the pandemic: Omicron is so contagious that it could infect so many people that even a small percentage requiring hospitalization could strain our hospital systems. And for those who are not vaccinated, the virus can still be fatal.

But people who are vaccinated (and ideally boosted) may not need to self-isolate as strictly as they did last winter. There is some leeway this time around, although it depends on your situation and your tolerance for risk.

When thinking about what’s right for you, check the transmission levels and vaccination rates in your county, which you can find here towards half of the page. For example, while Los Angeles County records about 74 new cases per 100,000 people per day, the most vaccinated Santa Clara County has about 20.

Take into account your immunization status and that of anyone you will come into contact with, how well you are, and how comfortable you are with catching the virus and being able to infect others, even if your symptoms are mild.

There are no universal answers, but here are some more tips:

Is it safe to throw a party for New Years Eve? A Times reporter asked the experts this thorny question.

How to travel responsibly during the busy holidays. The rush for seasonal travel seems unstoppable, but there are steps you can take to mitigate the risks.

Federal authorities shorten Covid-19 isolation period. The CDC on Monday reduced the period that some infected Americans must sequester.

SOUTH CALIFORNIA

  • Filming in Los Angeles: Body camera and surveillance footage show man attacking holiday shoppers before police open fire, killing him and a 14 year old girl.

  • 10 highway: More than half a century after the highway was built, Santa Monica will provide affordable housing to the predominantly black community it displaced, The Los Angeles Times reports.

CENTRAL CALIFORNIA

  • Homeownership rate: The significant increase over the past decade in the number of Fresno residents owning homes is the third highest in the country, Fresno Bee reports.

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA


For $ 3.5 million each, three houses in California.


Today’s travel tip comes from Anne Perrigo, who recommends the AK Smiley Public Library in Redlands:

“Mission style, always (I hope!) Housing a very sophisticated grandfather clock with an elaborate moon dial. I pretty much grew up in the kids section and the whole building was fascinating, then and now, early 1900s or so.

Tell us about your favorite places to visit in California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We will share more in future editions of the newsletter.


Our favorite house stories of 2021.


How do you mark the start of 2022? Do you make New Year’s resolutions?

Share with us on CAtoday@nytimes.com.


In 1942, in a small town in Germany, a Jewish family asked their non-Jewish neighbors to store a set of precious porcelain dishes for them.

The family, the Feiner, were deported by the Nazis and believed that one day they would return to collect the dishes. But the father, mother and daughter all died in concentration camps.

The German family in charge of the plates and serving bowls, edged with gold leaf and in near perfect condition, treated them like precious heirlooms. They looked after them for almost 80 years – until last month.

In June of this year, the family located a descendant of the Feiner who lived in Oakland.

And in November, she and some of her relatives flew to Germany to collect the plaques they didn’t even know existed and to meet the people who had kept them safe.

This incredible story by J. The Jewish News of Northern California worth reading to the end.


Thanks for reading. I’ll be back tomorrow. – Soumya

PS here today’s mini-crosswords, and a clue: Carpenter’s tie (5 letters).

Mariel Wamsley contributed to California Today. You can join the team at CAtoday@nytimes.com.

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