Thursday, October 15, 2020

Public Health Confirms Two New COVID-19 Cases

Posted By on Thu, Oct 15, 2020 at 4:19 PM


Humboldt County Public Health reported two new confirmed COVID-19 cases today, bringing the county's total to 544.

Today's report comes after the county confirmed eight new cases yesterday, the largest single day tally in a month. Today's confirmed cases came after laboratories processed 278 samples, with a positivity rate of 0.7 percent.

Humboldt County Health Officer Teresa Frankovich said in a press release that safety measures are increasingly important as flue season begins, urging residents to get a flu shot.

“Coronavirus and influenza virus infections will be circulating at the same time in our community,” she said. “Flu vaccination is another Public Health tool we have to protect members of our community who are most susceptible to flu or COVID complications and to protect our health care system capacity to serve those in need.”

Frankovich reminded residents that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyone over 6 months of age get vaccinated for the flu.

Under state data released this week, Humboldt remains in the "minimum" risk tier with a test positivity rate of 0.7 percent and an adjusted case rate of 1.1 per 100,000 people, an improvement from last week's 1.5 percent and 2 cases stats.

But health officials have warned that a jump in cases could relegate Humboldt into a more restrictive tier.

The statewide level is now 6.8 cases per 100,000 and a test positivity rate of 3.4 percent.

Under the lower risk category, most indoor businesses — including bars — can reopen but the county can put further restrictions in place, according to the state. Only seven other counties in California are in the minimal tier. Read more about what it means here.

New this week, Humboldt County Data Dashboard now includes hospitalization rates by age group, death rates by age group and case totals by ZIP code, the latter of which will be reported in "a range of 0 to 5 for case count until the area surpasses 5 total cases," according to a county news release.

After that threshold has been reached in a ZIP code, the exact number will be included.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 7.9 million cases have been confirmed nationally, including 366,645 in the last seven days, with a total of 216,025 deaths. In California, 858,401 COVID-19 cases have been reported to date, including 16,757 deaths, according to the Department of Public Health.

Basics of COVID-19

The California Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control, state that symptoms of novel coronavirus include cough and shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, or at least two of the following: fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat or a new loss of taste or smell.

Emergency warning signs needing immediate medical attention include difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to awaken, and bluish lips or face.

In an emergency situation:

Call ahead to the emergency room or inform the 911 operator of the possibility of a COVID-19 infection and, if possible, put on a face mask.

Symptoms or possible exposure:

In the case of a possible exposure with symptoms — fever and cough or shortness of breath — contact your doctor’s office or the county Department of Health and Human Services, which has a hotline that can be reached during business hours at covidinfo@co.humboldt.ca.us or at (707) 441-5000. Residents seeking medical advice or questions about testing are asked to contact Public Health at hhsphb@co.humbldt.ca.us or at (707) 445-6200.

St. Joseph Health has also set up a virtual assessment tool as an aid to assess risk factors for contracting the illness, which can be found at here.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has started a rumor-control webpage that can be found here.

For the Journal's latest COVID stories, updates and information resources, click here. Find the county's press release copied below:

Oct. 15, 2020 - Two New Cases Reported Today
707-441-5000 ; covidinfo@co.humboldt.ca.us ; Monday-Friday 8am to 5pm Opens in new window
Two new cases of COVID-19 were reported today, bringing to 544 the total number of county residents who have tested positive for the virus.

Humboldt County Health Officer Dr. Teresa Frankovich said COVID-19 safety measures are increasingly important as flu season begins. “Coronavirus and influenza virus infections will be circulating at the same time in our community,” she said.

“Flu vaccination is another Public Health tool we have to protect members of our community who are most susceptible to flu or COVID complications and to protect our health care system capacity to serve those in need,” Dr. Frankovich said. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyone over 6 months of age be vaccinated for flu.

Read more about flu vaccines here humboldtgov.org/DocumentCenter/View/90036.

For the most recent COVID-19 information, visit cdc.gov or cdph.ca.gov. Local information is available at humboldtgov.org or during business hours by contacting covidinfo@co.humboldt.ca.us or calling 707-441-5000.

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About The Author

Thadeus Greenson

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

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