Monday, March 9, 2020

UPDATE: Del Norte County Coronavirus Test Comes Back Negative

Posted By on Mon, Mar 9, 2020 at 12:33 PM


The test for the Del Norte County individual thought to possibly have COVID-19 has come back negative, health officials announced.

In a release Sunday, Del Norte County Public Health Officer Dr. Warren Rehwaldt said there was “no evidence of corona virus” and that additional information is expected to be release today.

Read the full release at the end of the story.


Del Norte County Public Health announced this afternoon that the county has what it suspects to be its first novel coronavirus case, though the patient has yet to be officially tested by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The case is being considered "presumptive" but unconfirmed.

According to Del Norte’s public health department, the patient went to a local healthcare facility and is now being treated in a “controlled environment,” and officials are working to trace their contacts and ask anyone potentially exposed to remain on home quarantine as they monitor for symptoms.

“The immediate risk to the public in Del Norte County is relatively low,” the press release states, going on to urge residents to wash hands properly, stay home when sick, cover their mouths when coughing/sneezing and regularly clean surfaces touched by many people.

See the full press release copied below.

400 L Street
Crescent City, California 95531
(707) 464-0861 Heather Snow, Director
Warren Rehwaldt, M.D., Public Health Officer
(707) 465-6701
DATE: 3/5/2020
SUBJECT: Suspected Case of COVID-19 in Del Norte County

Del Norte County Public Health and Del Norte County Office of Emergency Services are working together as the first Del Norte County resident with symptoms of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) has been approved for testing by the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

This individual presented themselves to a local healthcare facility. Del Norte Public Health is working with California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to coordinate sample delivery to one of the approved state laboratories. Contact tracing is currently underway and exposed contacts are being quarantined at home and monitored for symptoms.

 At this time, the case is presumptive only until a lab test can confirm or deny a positive result.
 The individual is currently being treated in a controlled environment.
 The immediate risk to the public in Del Norte County is relatively low.
 No further details about the patient will be shared to protect patient privacy.
Local authorities would like to remind the public of the following simple steps which can reduce or
prevent the spread of any respiratory illness, including COVID-19:
 Washing hands with liquid soap and water, and rubbing for at least 20 seconds, or using an
alcohol-based sanitizer of at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not immediately available;
 Covering your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or
 Staying home if you are sick;
 Regularly cleaning surfaces touched by many people; and
 Practicing social distancing measures, such as reducing your interaction with large groups or

Symptoms of COVID-19 (coronavirus) range from mild to severe and include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Older residents and individuals with underlying medical conditions are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19.

If you have questions or concerns please call Del Norte County Dept. of Health and Human Services, Public Health Branch at:

Monday-Friday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm: 707-464-0861
After Hours: 707-464-3191
Read the full release below: 
The results of the suspected case of COVID-19 that the Health Department announced last week have come back and are negative. There was no evidence of coronavirus. The patient, the clinician involved, and patient contacts have been informed, and as we have learned that the story is already in our community, we wish to confirm the results today. We will be releasing an additional Public Service Announcement tomorrow about coronavirus. 
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Thadeus Greenson

Thadeus Greenson is the news editor of the North Coast Journal.

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