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Santa Barbara health officials announced Saturday there are now 64 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county, a jump of 17 cases from the day before. One of the patients is younger than 10 years old. Six patients are hospitalized, with three in the Intensive Care Unit. Of the 680 tests conducted so far, 433 were negative, 182 are still pending, and one was inconclusive.
The 64-patient figure significantly underrepresents the true scope of positive cases in Santa Barbara County. Due to a shortage of testing resources, a dilemma faced by doctors across the United States, only a very narrow demographic of residents are being tested. Health officials use this triage tool to make the determination. The 680 tests account for just 0.15 percent of Santa Barbara County’s population.
The county’s Public Health Department is also not tracking how many residents with COVID-19 symptoms have asked to be tested, nor how many are “presumptive positive” cases, those who doctors strongly believe are infected with the coronavirus but are unable to definitively diagnose due to the testing shortage.
The home locations of the 64 patients are as follows:
South County unincorporated area (includes Montecito, Toro Canyon, Summerland, and the City of Carpinteria) ― 8
City of Santa Barbara (and the unincorporated area of Mission Canyon) ― 25
City of Goleta ― 2
Community of Isla Vista (and the unincorporated area bordering Isla Vista and Goleta) ― 0
Unincorporated area of Goleta Valley and Gaviota ― 1
Santa Ynez Valley (includes cities of Solvang and Buellton and the communities of Santa Ynez, Los Alamos, Los Olivos, and Ballard) ― 2
City of Lompoc (and the communities of Mission Hills and Vandenberg Village) ― 2
City of Santa Maria ― 19
Community of Orcutt ― 5
North County unincorporated areas (includes New Cuyama, Sisquoc, Casmalia, Garey, and City of Guadalupe) ― 0