There were only 23 new COVID-19 cases reported in Monterey County during the last five days, with just one new death. Business owners are relieved that we were moved into the Yellow Tier yesterday, which means an increase in capacity for restaurants, gyms, movie theaters, the aquarium, etc. Bars that do not serve food can reopen outdoors. Nationwide, the numbers have also moderated significantly. There were only 17,119 new cases reported today. Over the past week, there have been only 96,911 new cases. By comparison, just a couple of weeks ago we were reporting over 75K new cases per day. Deaths over the past week have been fairly modest at 3,168. The CDC released data on “breakthrough infections” which are people that get COVID-19 after being vaccinated. There were only 9,245 breakthrough cases out of more than 95 million fully vaccinated Americans as of April 26. Studies suggest immunocompromised people or those on medications that interrupt their immune system (such as those on chemo or who have had an organ transplant or are on dialysis) are less likely to be protected by the COVID-19 vaccine. In California, there were 10,114 new cases in the last week, versus 3,348 in just one day on May 14. Deaths over the last week were 356, which is still considered modest. It sure looks like we are quickly coming out of the woods. Please, if you have not been vaccinated, do so right away!