Ventura County continues to re-open in the red tier as positive covid-19 cases decline

Ventura+County+COVID-19+news+from+Wednesday%2C+March+24%2C+2021.

Ventura County COVID-19 news from Wednesday, March 24, 2021.

By Hailey Garcia

On Wednesday, March 24, the weekly COVID-19 press conference was held in Santa Paula at the old Kmart location. The meeting began with District 3 Ventura County Board of Supervisor, Kelly Long, who was proud to represent Santa Paula and the opening of the new vaccination site.

In two weeks, supply for the Santa Paula location will increase making it possible for many more individuals to get vaccinated.

“The new Santa Paula location has the capacity to do testing and vaccines,” Long said.

Over 343,000 vaccines have been administered with both first and second doses. That’s nearly 35 percent of the county’s eligible population that has received at least the first dose needed.

Ventura County is currently still in the red tier.

“The county’s case rates, positivity rates and health rates are continuing to decline,” Long stated.

The main focus is the health equity and getting the vaccines out to as many people in the county to ensure positivity numbers continue to decline as well as soon being able to hit the orange tier.

“Thank you to business assistance groups that provide 20 million dollars for the grant program that was released,” Long expressed. Applications for this program will begin on March 31 at Ventura County Recovers or the VC Business Grants website.

Many students are going back to school and able to now participate in electives such as cheer, band and dance.

“Thank you teachers for getting vaccinated and making it safe to get back into classrooms,” Long stated. “Thank you to essential workers who have taken the next step to make it possible.”

For this week’s numbers, the testing positivity is 1.9 percent. In other words, 1.9 percent of people tested positive for COVID-19. There were 66 new COVID-19 cases in Ventura County.

Overall, 5,000 COVID-19 tests were performed. There still remains 35 COVID-19 patients in the eight county hospitals, 13 of those patients are still in the I.C.U. The total number of deaths in Ventura County is 961.

Public Health Officer, Doctor Robert Levin, speaking at Wednesday’s COVID-19 press conference in Santa Paula, CA. On March 24, 2021.
Public Health Officer, Doctor Robert Levin, speaking at Wednesday’s COVID-19 press conference in Santa Paula, CA. On March 24, 2021.

According to Public Health Officer, Doctor Robert Levin, “C.D.C says that across the nation, an increase of five percent of Covid cases in our nation.”

By following safety precautions such as social distancing, wearing a mask, avoiding large gatherings and using outside venues versus inside preferentially, people can keep Ventura County from increasing the number of COVID-19 cases.

The updated variants in the county are 45 U.K. variants, one South African variant and seven Brazilian variants.

“We are concerned about these variants because they can spread more easily and can cause more serious disease,” Levin stated. “We believe the immunity you get from the vaccinations is better than immunity from the disease itself.”

In the next few weeks, more vaccines will be received from the state.

There is now a fourth vaccine called the “AstraZeneca” vaccine. 30 million of these vaccines will be received in the United States by April if all goes planned. This vaccine is an inexpensive vaccine and can be stored for up to six months.

Like two out of the three vaccines that are available right now, this vaccine will require two doses. This new vaccine is 79 percent effective in preventing any symptoms at all.

The state is planning to invest in giving this vaccine to Mexico and Canada to avoid COVID-19 from coming into California. More data will be out tomorrow with updates on this vaccine.

Chief Medical Officer for VCMC and Santa Paula Hospital, Director of Women’s health services, speaking at Wednesday’s COVID-19 press conference in Santa paula, CA. On March 24, 2021
Chief Medical Officer for VCMC and Santa Paula Hospital, Director of Women’s health services, speaking at Wednesday’s COVID-19 press conference in Santa paula, CA. On March 24, 2021

“I feel so encouraged by the strength in our community enduring all of the challenges,” Chief Medical Officer for Ventura County Medical Center and Santa Paula Hospital, Associate Director of Women’s Health Services, Minako Watabe stated.

After a difficult year, Ventura County is in a better place than a couple of months ago. The community members at Santa Paula Hospital provide care in a fast and timely manner with all essential surgeries needed available.

With the decline in COVID-19 cases, the visitors center at hospitals are now opening up, making it possible to visit other patients and loved ones.

The community can look forward to better and brighter days and recover from sacrificing so much.

There are eight high volume sites,15 pharmacy partners and 15 mobile teams who help administer vaccines.

County Executive Officer, Mike Powers, speaking at Wednesday’s COVID-19 press conference in Santa Paula, CA. On March 24, 2021.
County Executive Officer, Mike Powers, speaking at Wednesday’s COVID-19 press conference in Santa Paula, CA. On March 24, 2021.

‘When we get the vaccine, we’ll give it,” County Executive Officer Mike Powers exclaimed.

From a county wide standpoint Ventura County is heading toward the orange tier as early as April 6. Ventura County’s numbers are dropping faster than state wide.

“Thank you and because of you we are heading in a great direction in Ventura County,” Powers expressed.

For more information, go to Ventura County Recovers.