Humboldt Sees 19 New Confirmed Cases, 2 Hospitalizations

By

comment
Humboldt County Public Health reported 19 new COVID-19 cases today and two new hospitalizations, a resident in their 50s and another in their 60s.

The cases were confirmed after laboratories processed 347 samples with a test-positivity rate of 5.5 percent. According to a state database, four people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 locally, including two under intensive care.

The county Joint Information Center reports that of the 52 new cases reported since June 7, four of the individuals have been between the ages of 0 and 9. Seven local residents were  hospitalized in that time frame, including one person in their 20s. None of the people hospitalized had been vaccinated.

Public Health reported last week that 48.6 percent of Humboldt County residents age 12 and older have now been fully vaccinated, and that 58.3 percent of eligible residents have received at least one dose.

And, at a press conference Wednesday, Health Officer Ian Hoffman noted that two COVID-19 variants — B.1.1.7 and P1 — are now the predominant strains of the virus locally.

Public Health vaccinations clinics are scheduled in Samoa, Eureka and Arcata this week (see more information on locations and times below). All will include the Pfizer vaccine, which is the only one authorized for those 12 to 17.

To make an appointment at a clinic or pharmacy, and to request help with transportation, visit www.vaccines.gov or www.myturn.ca.gov.

When the state updated its COVID-19 risk tiers for the last time Tuesday, it kept Humboldt County in its orange "moderate" tier, allowing local businesses to operate as they have since April until the state eases most restrictions June 15. According to the state's data, Humboldt County recorded 5.1 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents and had a test-positivity rate of 3.6 percent over the seven-day period. Humboldt's numbers dwarf those of the state as a whole, which recorded 2 new COVID-19 case per 100,000 residents and a test-positivity rate of 0.8 percent.

To date, Humboldt County has confirmed 4,434 cases, with 197 hospitalizations and 46 confirmed COVID-19 related deaths.

The county dashboard lists 4,294 people as having "recovered" from the virus locally, though that just means they are no longer contagious and does not account for long-term health impacts, which local healthcare workers have told the Journal can be substantial, even in previously healthy patients.

The county’s test positivity rate has gone from 3.6 percent in November, to 7.3 percent in December and 9.9 percent in January, before dropping to 6.5 percent in February. In March, it dropped to 4.5 percent before inching back up to 5.9 percent in April. In May, it jumped to 8.3 percent.

Meanwhile, the county's Joint Information Center is urging locals to get tested, calling it "one of the most helpful things county residents can do for the community at large," because it allows Public Health to catch cases early and limit spread. The state-run OptumServe testing site at Redwood Acres Fairgrounds in Eureka is open seven days a week and no-cost appointments can be made by clicking here or calling (888) 634-1123 and other newly opened screening site information can be found here.

The Humboldt County Data Dashboard includes hospitalization rates by age group, death rates by age group and case totals by ZIP code, the latter of which are reported in "a range of 0 to 5 for case count until the area surpasses 5 total cases," according to the county. After that threshold has been reached in a ZIP code, the exact number will be included.

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 assessing risk factors for contracting the illness, which can be found 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.

Read the county release below:

Nineteen new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Humboldt County since the most recent report on Friday, bringing to 4,434 the total number of county residents who have tested positive for the virus. Two new hospitalizations also have been reported since Friday, one resident in their 50s and another in their 60s.

Daily and weekly data has been updated on the Humboldt County Data Dashboard. The “Positive Case Count, Hospitalization Count and Death Count by Age Group” section of the Dashboard now displays the weekly increase in cases, hospitalizations and deaths for each age group in parentheses alongside the cumulative total.

Since the last weekly update on June 7, the county saw 52 new cases, four of those between the ages of 0 and 9. Seven local residents have been hospitalized in that time, including one person in their 20s. None of the people hospitalized had been vaccinated.

Humboldt County Public Health COVID-19 vaccination clinics are scheduled this week in Samoa and Eureka. Walk-ins are welcome at all Public Health clinics.

Community members may make an appointment in advance or view additional options for vaccination at MyTurn.ca.gov. See the schedule of Public Health clinics below.

  • Samoa – Wednesday, June 16 – 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Samoa Women’s Club (115 Rideout Ave.) Pfizer/Johnson & Johnson

  • Eureka – Thursday, June 17 – 2 to 6 p.m. College of the Redwoods Gym (7351 Tompkins Hill Road) Pfizer/Johnson & Johnson

  • Arcata – Saturday, June 19 – 5 to 7:30 p.m. Arcata Ballpark/Humboldt Crabs game (888 F St.) Pfizer/Johnson & Johnson

The Pfizer vaccine is authorized for people age 12 and older, and the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine is authorized for people 18 and older. A parent or guardian must accompany minor children to the clinic. Minor consent forms are available online in English and Spanish and may be printed and filled out for each minor child before coming to the clinic. Español: humboldtgov.org/MinorConsentEspanol English: humboldtgov.org/MinorConsentEnglish COVID-19 vaccine is also available at many local pharmacies.

Check availability at vaccines.gov, or text a ZIP code to 438829 to find a participating pharmacy nearby. Most pharmacies allow walk-ins. View the Humboldt County Data Dashboard online at humboldtgov.org/dashboard, or go to humboldtgov.org/DashboardArchives to download today’s data.

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


Editor's Note: This post has been updated to correct the day of the Arcata clinic.

Add a comment