Cars line up to receive a Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine at the drive-through vaccination site at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor (Waterworld) in Concord, Calif., on Wednesday March 31, 2021. (Ray Saint Germain/Bay City News)

Contra Costa County has the second-lowest COVID-19 death rate in the United States among counties with more than a million residents, county health director Anna Roth told the county board of supervisors Tuesday.

Showing the strength of what Roth called “the benefit of regional approaches,” Roth said Alameda County is number one. Santa Clara County is third.

As of April 20, there have been 1,297 COVID-related deaths in Contra Costa (three people have died in the county since April 20).

Roth also announced the health department has launched a “Path to Zero” initiative, meant to stop all preventable COVID deaths. The campaign will encourage people to stay up to date on vaccinations and get treatment if you get infected. The county wants people to be aware of what it says is a highly effective, free, prescription medication. Path to Zero aims to raise awareness about how to access treatment options.

Any Contra Costa resident sick with COVID can call the county’s 24/7 advice nurse line at (877) 661-6230 and request a prescription.

“These treatments are free to anyone, and readily available at this point,” Roth said.

As of Tuesday, 82.2 percent of county residents were fully vaccinated, with another 57.9 percent receiving boosters. Total cases since the pandemic began have reached 193,709 with 2,159 cases currently active.

“This is not a time for a victory lap – we are still very hard at work,” Roth told the board. “But we think this is a time to be hopeful. There’s prevention, there’s now really good treatment options available. And masks or not, vaccinations or not, the treatment is here for you. It’s going to take some time and some continued work by our community and our team, but we’re confident we can navigate this path to zero preventable COVID-19 deaths here in Contra Costa County.”