This image depicted a test tube with viral transport media that contained a patient’s sample to be tested for the presence of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. (James Gathany/CDC 2020)

San Joaquin County’s COVID-19 rates are dropping at a significant rate, county health officials told the Board of Supervisors Tuesday.

The county’s public health officer Maggie Park told the board that the case rate for people testing positive for COVID-19 was at 66 per 100,000 people as of Tuesday.

“That 66 per 100,000 is significantly down from 198 per 100,000 which I reported two weeks ago,” Park said.

The omicron COVID-19 variant contributed to the majority of the positive COVID-19 cases reported in January, according to Park.

“If you were to look at the makeup of which variants constituted most of the cases in January you would see that 304 out of 306 cases were omicron,” Park said.

She said all of the February COVID-19 positive cases throughout the county are also attributable to the omicron variant.

As of Tuesday, Park said the county had 173 people with COVID hospitalized, with 52 in the intensive care unit and 35 on ventilators.

The county reported a testing positivity rate of 11.1 percent, which Park said is greater than the states average, currently at 5.7 percent as of Thursday.

“That 11.1 percent is still quite high … but this is down from 22 percent that I reported two weeks ago,” Park said.

The county’s data showed that 62.3 percent of its residents are fully vaccinated and 12.6 percent are partially vaccinated.

Park said the state has 73.9 percent of people fully vaccinated and 8.7 percent partially vaccinated.