Jeff Pack
Staff Writer

Riverside University Health System reported 733 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday and three new deaths due to the virus. In all, 26,481 have tested positive for the virus to date and 553 people have died since the county began recording data back in early March.

The county reported 182 people have recovered from the virus since Monday and 25 more people were admitted into the hospital. There are 136 people currently being treated in county ICUs for the virus. 

Locally on Monday, Menifee saw the highest number of new cases, with 30 more than reported over the weekend and 522 cases overall. The city has also suffered seven deaths overall. 

Temecula added 18 cases (458). Murrieta added 18 (515), Wildomar added eight (219), Lake Elsinore added 27 (496), Canyon Lake added two (35), Menifee added 20 (542), Hemet added 23 (657), and San Jacinto added 18 (470).

In local communities, Anza added no new cases (7), East Hemet added eight new cases (131), French Valley added three new cases (142), Lakeland Village added two (77), Valley Vista added no new cases (85), and Winchester added one more case (4).

So far, one person has died from Temecula, 11 from Murrieta, five from Wildomar, 10 from Lake Elsinore, none from Canyon Lake, eight from Menifee, 28 from Hemet, seven from San Jacinto, none from Anza, two from East Hemet, one from French Valley, one from Lakeland Village, none from Valle Vista, and none from Winchester. 

The county reported that there were 259 confirmed cases in county jails and another 1,169 cases recorded in state prisons within the county. Both numbers indicated minimal growth. 

On Tuesday, the county reported that 294,389 have been tested so far, 5,027 more than Monday, 

The known active COVID-19 case count is 16,035, up 548 from Monday, figures showed. According to the county executive office, the active case count is derived by subtracting deaths and recoveries from the current cumulative total — 26,481.

The number of confirmed patient recoveries is 9,893, officials said. The county defines a recovery as someone who has not exhibited any COVID-19 symptoms for at least 14 days.

County Department of Public Health Director Kim Saruwatari told the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday that the average positivity rate for those screened for the virus countywide is at 20%, more than double the preferred state threshold of 8%.

“The high positivity rate is something we continue to watch,” Saruwatari said.

She said the doubling time — or the number of days in which documented virus cases increase 100% — is at 23.7 days. A doubling rate of seven days is considered severe.

According to Saruwatari, there have been notable “shifts” in infections impacting different age groups. One was the 18-39 year-old block, which in May comprised 36% of both symptomatic and asymptomatic diagnoses.

Saruwatari said the group made up 47% of cases in June.  

“The shift to a younger age group is concerning to us,” she said, urging all residents to take precautions to safeguard against exposure.

City News Service contributed to this report. 

Jeff Pack can be reached by email at