TIJUANA (Border Report) — As COVID-19 cases decrease in Baja California and in the city of Tijuana, health officials have decided to lower the risk level from the orange tier to green, skipping yellow and clearing the way for all activities with very few restrictions.
The move has puzzled many who feel the state is not ready and remains at risk.
But Baja California Health Secretary Adrián Medina Amarillas announced this week all activities will now be allowed while encouraging residents to continue using face masks.
Medina Amarillas said the state will launch an education campaign asking people to remain cautious as they return to normal.
“We’re keeping an eye on these recommendations not only as we have reached this point, but as we try to maintain it, the border region is now in the green level,” he said.
Some, including the state’s Commission for the Protection Against Sanitary Risks, question why the state jumped from the orange tier without implementing the yellow level, which mandates more precautions be taken.
When asked about this move, Medina Amarillas said the state is ready for it, although the pandemic is not over and that it persists.
“We’re only moving into this new normal,” he said. “We’re doing evaluations every two weeks to determine if any changes are required, but in this case we are ready for the green level.”
Baja California’s top epidemiologist stated in the last 24 hours, only 59 new cases have been reported in the state with only one death, and that over the last two weeks, 958 cases have been confirmed.
With word of the state’s new health level, those in the tourism industry have said they will begin gearing up to bring back tourists to Northern Baja California with a big marketing push beginning March 6.
“This will help our economic recovery and hopefully we can get beyond an uncertain future that has plagued us from the beginning of the pandemic,” said Julián Palombo, president of the Avenida Revolución Tourist Business Association in Tijuana. “For us, this is a step forward and welcomed by 100 percent of our members because restrictions translate into a reduction in business.”
Palombo stated they are now optimistic of having a strong “Spring Break” period when thousands of Americans, primarily from California, visit Baja California.
“We already saw a big increase in visits during the President’s Day holiday with many coming here seeking medical care and low-cost groceries,” he said. “We hope we don’t see another adverse phenomenon of any kid whether natural or man made.”