SAN JOSE (KPIX) – Santa Clara County officials are keeping an eye on a rising key indicator in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

“We have seen an uptick, a small uptick in the number of hospitalizations in the county,” said David Campos, Public Information Officer for Santa Clara County.

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Hospitalizations went up from 38 on May 31, to 73 by Monday, June 8. County officials say the most likely cause is the easing of restrictions, but they say it’s still a ‘wait and see’ situation.

“We know that it’s going to take for us at least three weeks to fully understand the full impact of the easing of restrictions,” Campos said.

Outdoor table service has returned to Santa Clara County restaurants and that was a reason to celebrate for one group of friends who raised a toast “to the reopening of downtown and patio living!”

But the diners are not the only ones celebrating.

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Tostadas, on Santa Clara Street is one of a handful of San Jose restaurants that are open and serving customers.

“Now that we’re doing outdoor orders, it’s not the same, but it’s better than just takeout orders,” said Tanya Lucero, a restaurant manager.

The lifting of health restrictions comes at a critical time, just days after mass protests of police brutality in the streets of San Jose, which saw breakdowns in social distancing and many people not wearing masks.

The county is now urging more people to be tested, especially essential workers, and those who were involved in the protests.

“Wear a face covering, maintain social distance and get tested,” said Campos.

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It’s all part of a continuing prescription that has so far made Santa Clara County a model in how to deal with the pandemic.