Friday Update: 506 Confirmed COVID19 Cases
By edhat staff
The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department (PHD) reports an additional ten confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county today. The total number of confirmed cases is 506 of which 389 have fully recovered.
Of the 10 new cases, 7 are located in Santa Maria, 2 in the City of Santa Barbara, and 1 in the unincorporated Goleta Valley area.
Overall, there are 60 people quarantined at home, 36 are recovering in a hospital with 14 in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU), and 13 are pending an update. Eight deaths have been reported. More information regarding each case can be found at publichealthsbc.org.
Beaches Remain Open
County Supervisor Gregg Hart reminded residents to continue practicing strict social distancing, even while at the beach, during a press conference on Friday.
"Going to the beach cannot be business as usual. The virus can spread rapidly if too many people gather at one place," he said.
Sheriff's Deputies on horseback and ATVs are expected to patrol beaches throughout the county to make sure people are distancing properly. California Highway Patrol will be ticketing illegal parking violations near the beaches. Lifeguards and parks department employees will also be educating the public at local beaches and parks.
"We understand that outdoor exercise and recreational activities are important for overall health," said Public Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg. "As a community, we need to make sure these activities do not pose an unwanted risk of spreading the virus. For the most part, county residents have shown this is possible."
Concerning the use of facial coverings or masks, Dr. Ansorg stated it's recommended to have use one when going into a store, however, there is not enough scientific evidence to make it mandatory at all times. Social distancing and good hand washing hygiene have been proven to be the most effective, he said.
New Testing Sites & Contract Tracing
Earlier in the day, PHD announced residents can now make appointments to be screened and possibly tested at COVID-19 Community Based Testing Sites.
The testing is done by appointment only for residents who have been previously screened and will take place at sites in Santa Maria, Lompoc, and Santa Barbara.
The county can conduct 100 to 130 tests per site, per day, for five days a week. PHD's target goal is 500 to 600 tests a day which should be feasible when factoring in the testing capacity at local hospitals and clinics, said Dr. Ansorg.
PHD is currently working to train up to 100 people for various jobs related to contact tracing and disease investigation.
When an individual tests positive for COVID-19, they will receive a call from the PHD nursing staff to investigate disease tracing. The positive patient will be notified of their test result and will be asked to identify anyone they have been in contact with. In most instances, the identity of the positive patient will be withheld unless there's a situation where the person was in a congregate setting.
The positive patient, and anyone else they were in contact with, will be educated on the risks and symptoms of COVID-19. They will need to self-isolate for 14 days and will be retested following that period.
Cottage Health Numbers
Below is a status update as of May 1, 2020.
· Cottage Health is caring for a total of 200 patients across all campuses.
· 151 are acute care patients; 222 acute care beds remain available.
· In surge planning, capacity is identified for adding 270 acute care beds.
· Of the 151 patients, 10 patients are on ventilators; 65 ventilators remain available (adult, pediatric and neonatal ventilators)
· Of the 151 patients, 14 are in isolation with COVID-19 symptoms; 9 are confirmed COVID-19 positive.
· Of 14 patients in isolation, 5 patients are in critical care.
· Cottage has collected 3,736 cumulative test samples: 214 resulted in positive, 3,375 resulted in negative, and 147 are pending. In most of these tests, patients did not require hospital admission.
SLO & Ventura Counties
As of Friday, Ventura County is reporting 544 total cases. Of those, 385 have recovered, 141 are quarantined at home, 25 are hospitalized with 11 in the ICU, and there have been 18 deaths.
In San Luis Obispo County, there are 188 confirmed cases. Of those, 147 have recovered, 33 are quarantined at home, 7 are hospitalized with 2 in the ICU, and there has been 1 death.