Results Come Back from Mass Public Testing

Santa Barbara County Reports 14 New COVID Cases Today

The testing facility at Earl Warren Showgrounds | | Credit: Courtesy

So far, 2,500 county residents have queued up to take the public COVID-19 tests that began last week. About 1,600 results have come back, with a less than one percent positive rate, reported County Health spokesperson Jackie Ruiz, or nine individuals.

Of the 10,393 people tested in Santa Barbara County altogether, 1,387 have been positive for COVID-19. Of that number, 1,146 were male and 229 were female; Lompoc prison, a men’s penitentiary, has 893 of those male cases. Sixty-six health-care workers have contracted the disease, a signal that had Public Health looking to add nurses in order to be prepared for any surge in cases, said health director Van Do-Reynoso.

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As a whole, the county had 14 newly confirmed cases today, compared to six yesterday. Around the county, 26 were in hospital today and yesterday — down from 39 two days ago. Eleven were in intensive care units at the county’s three hospital systems: Marian, Lompoc Valley, and Cottage. No new death was reported, that number standing at 11. So far, 401 individuals have recovered, while 50 people with milder cases are quarantined at home.

Cottage Health has released its COVID patient load and ventilator usage every weekday, and the hospital system has had patients in the single digits this past week. Today, six patients were in isolation with COVID symptoms — three in critical care and three on a ventilator. Five of them had tested positive.

Reportedly, only one of today’s new cases was at Lompoc prison. The number of COVID cases at the prison reached an eye-watering level when widespread testing at the 3,000-inmate facility began last week. It leapt upward by the hundreds for three days. 

The new cases may have tamed into the dozens in recent days, but the totals continue to differ between County Public Health and the Bureau of Prisons. Only half the facility has been tested so far.

Editor’s Note: After this story was posted, Public Health cleared up the high rate of cases among men, noting that Lompoc prison was a men’s facility.

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