Ventura County’s hospitalizations increase, has the highest testing volume in Southern California

Image+provided+by+the+CDC

Image provided by the CDC

By Karla Vazquez

Ventura County explained the surge in cases and the mechanics of Thanksgiving week this year during a weekly press conference on Nov. 24, 2020.

Kelly Long, Ventura County Board of Supervisors Board Chair, explained where most of the COVID-19 cases are coming from.

“The majority of our COVID-19 cases are in the public gatherings. It’s not where we go to work and it hits everybody, it’s really in our public gatherings and so we need everyone to help us with that,” Long said.

There are 1,672 new cases as of Nov. 30. There are also eight additional deaths reported which makes a total of 183 fatalities due to COVID-19 in Ventura County. There are 99 current hospitalizations with 25 in the intensive care unit. In fact, hospitalizations have increased. Dr. Robert Levin, Ventura County Public Health Officer, explained the increased number of hospitalizations over the months at the Nov. 24 meeting.

“The largest number with people hospitalized across the county, 103 back with the last surge, lowest we had was a couple months ago with 10 cases in our county,” Levin explained.

Dr. John Fankhauser, CEO Ventura County Medical Center and Santa Paula Hospital, reassured the public that hospitals are safe and emphasized that nobody is safe from COVID-19.

“People think that this is a disease that only affects the elderly or those with severe medical conditions but that’s not what we are seeing at our hospital, of those 16 patients in our two hospitals, ten are younger than I am, we have two patients in their 20s, one patient whose in her 30s and we have six patients in their 40s, I just want to reflect that to you,” Fankhauser said.

Ventura County’s daily testing set a new record. On Nov. 24, 2020 the average daily tests were 551. The state standard is 150 out of 100,000 over the past 7 days. Currently the average daily tests is 493.

The case rate metric is the seven-day average case rate per 100,000. The current case rate is in the purple tier and is at 12.3. Mike Powers, Ventura County executive officer, explained what it meant to have a testing measure of 551 and the current case rate.

“We are at 551 test per day, that is one of the highest in all of Southern California,” Powers said. “Our counties case rate is one of the lowest in the Southern California region as well, its higher than we want it to be and its higher than it needs to be to get us back into the tier, but it just still shows that Ventura County is really outpacing most in the state”

To learn more about Ventura County’s effort to reopen, visit venturacountyrecovers.org