CDPH Announces Valley Fever Cases Hit Record High in 2019
This week, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced 9,004 new cases of Valley Fever were reported in California in 2019, the highest number since the state began tracking cases in 1995. The highest incidence in Valley Fever in 2019 was reported in counties in the Central Valley and Central Coast regions of the state, including Kern, Kings, San Luis Obispo, Fresno, Tulare, Madera, and Monterey counties.
According to CDPH, it remains unclear why the state reached a record level in 2019, but the above average level of rainfall during the 2018-19 winter may have contributed. While anyone can be infected with Valley Fever, those most at-risk for severe disease include individuals who are black or Filipino, adults 60 years or older, pregnant women, and people with diabetes or conditions that weaken the immune system.
CDPH posts data on Valley Fever cases monthly, issues periodic updates, and provides educational materials on the CDPH website. During 2019-20, CDPH implemented a multimedia Valley Fever awareness campaign to reach more people and providers, including residents living in areas with moderate to high rates of Valley Fever and those at risk of severe disease.
More information on Valley Fever is available here.