SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Public health officials Monday released a breakdown of San Francisco’s more than 1,200 confirmed coronavirus cases by neighborhoods and zip codes, revealing the city’s Mission District has been the hottest spot for community spread during the current outbreak.
But San Francisco Mayor London Breed was quick to point out the virus really has not shown any geographical limitations.
“I want to stress that when it comes to coronavirus, no zip code or neighborhood is inherently safer than another,” she said. “Every San Franciscan should continue to follow public health requirements—stay home, stay six feet apart, and cover your face when you’re outside for essential needs.”
“This map should not make anyone more relaxed, or more fearful,” she added. “We must make progress reducing the spread of coronavirus everywhere in our city in order to emerge from this pandemic.”
San Francisco has prioritized vulnerable populations in its coronavirus response, including those over 60, with underlying health conditions, people experiencing homeless and those living in congregate settings.
The map reflects only the people who have tested positive in a given zip code, and is not a complete picture of the whole population. It includes a case count and rate of cases for each location, based on the data collected to date.
The numbers of confirmed cases are small compare to the overall population of San Francisco, which is over 800,000. Any increase in the number of tests conducted will greatly influence zip code case counts and rates.
“Health emergencies exploit the inequalities in society,” said San Francisco Public Health chief Dr. Grant Colfax “People with fewer resources, chronic illnesses, underlying health conditions and who have experienced institutionalized stigma and discrimination are going to be more at risk for getting sick.”
“This map is sobering,” he continued. “But, unfortunately it is not surprising.”
The 94107 zip code, which includes SoMa, currently shows one of the highest rates of cases in the city. This is partially due to the MSC South Shelter being located in that zip code. The shelter is the location of the city’s largest outbreak, with 96 cases among homeless residents to date.
The highest number of cases are currently in the 94110 zip code, in the Mission. Citywide, 25 percent of positive cases are among Latinos, although they made up only 15 percent of the San Francisco population. This likely reflects risk factors such as living in crowded conditions and whether residents have sufficient support to stay home and reduce their outings.
San Francisco has also seen the impact on the Latino community at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, where more than 80 percent of the hospitalized coronavirus patients are Latino.
“Nationally, people of color and low-income communities are hardest hit by the coronavirus,” said Sheryl Davis, Executive Director, San Francisco Human Rights Commission. “For many, the disparate impact of COVID-19 on people of color comes as no surprise. The systemic problems of food insecurity, unequal housing access, limited transit options and opportunity gaps in communities of color contribute to the impact the pandemic is having on our Asian Pacific Islander, Black and Latino communities.”