SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — The San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency on Wednesday confirmed 603 cases of COVID-19 in San Diego, a number that contrasts drastically with confirmed cases south of the border in Tijuana, a city of almost 2 million people.
According to Baja California’s Secretary of Health, the city of Tijuana has only 15 cases of COVID-19, which is less than 2% of confirmed cases with its sister city north of the border.
“This doesn’t mean we may not have a surge in our area — till now we haven’t seen it, but it appears the border fence is having this effect,” said Victor Borja Aburto, Director of Health Relations for Mexico’s Mexico’s institute of public health.
Another public health expert, Alheli Calderon Villarreal, said the lower number of cases in Tijuana can be attributed in part to fewer international flights arriving south of the border.
Calderon noted that San Diego International Airport sees 25.2 million passengers per year, while Tijuana gets just under 9 million.
“The infections aren’t created or prevented by borders, but by people. The border acting as a physical barrier prevents more contact with people from the United States, this slows down the rapid spread and it’s probably why we don’t have a bigger epidemic on both sides,” said Calderon.
Calderon did point out the next couple of weeks will be crucial south of the border as they wait and see if more cases will be seen in Tijuana. She applauded efforts to finally restrict the flow of people in that city something she hopes will halt the wide spread of Covid-19.
Under normal circumstances, more than 100,000 people cross the border on a daily basis between San Diego and Tijuana.
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