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Sonoma County Health Officer Orders Residents to Wear Face Covering

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“It’s a very fluid situation,” Larock said of the county’s current public health emergency regulations seeking to reduce the virus that caused the pandemic worldwide.

Last week, Mendocino County health officials relaxed some restrictions, including allowing residents to walk and cycle in parks near their homes. Only four cases of the virus have been reported in the county.

As of Monday night, Sonoma County had 81 active cases out of a total of 152 cases of COVID-19, a respiratory illness caused by the virus, since the first local infected on March 2. Was.

The county reported five new confirmed cases and eight recovery during the 24-hour period ending Monday night. A total of 3,768 COVID-19 diagnostic tests were performed locally and 3,616 or 96% were negative.

Still, Mase said “it’s really hard to predict” how the virus will spread in the coming weeks. According to the first batch of local case predictive modeling done for the county by Imperial College London, the potential for Sonoma County surges is about six weeks ahead. Modeling has shown that when the county peaks in late May or early June, 1,500 inhabitants may need hospital care.

“It’s encouraging to not have the number we were expecting,” said a health official. “But we are in the early stages of the whole situation. And as you know, flattening a curve is only that. It flattens the curve so that it doesn’t suddenly hit the surge. We will continue to see cases. ”

By reducing the potential surge of COVID-19 cases, local healthcare providers prevent overwhelming local hospitals and clinics, allowing more care and treatment to focus on the most critical cases That means more lives can be saved.

On the other side of combating infectious diseases, county health officials are targeting communities and institutions that are particularly vulnerable to coronaviruses, such as skilled nursing centers, homeless populations, and county prisons.

The county has launched an enhanced surveillance testing program to look for virus cases at skilled nursing s. This has recently helped identify staff at the Sebastopol facility who had been infected by the virus but had no symptoms.

County officials also want to conduct surveillance tests on some groups of homeless individuals and do the same in Sonoma County Jail by the end of the week.

“There are no cases in prison so far we know,” Mase said.

Meanwhile, county residents who ignore the requirement to cover her face may be fined for misdemeanor, face fines, or both, officials said. Like other local public health orders, this directive remains in force until canceled.

“We take this very seriously,” Mase said at a Facebook briefing. “This is difficult for everyone and feels weird, but here in Sonoma County, we’ve come through more difficult times before and have emerged stronger. We know we can do this together.” But I can’t do it without your help. “

For staff writer Chantelle Lee, please contact 707-521-5337 or [email protected] On Twitter @ ChantelleHLee. You can contact the staff writer Martin Espinosa at 707-521-5213 or [email protected] On Twitter @pressreno.

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