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Tuolumne County No Longer In Containment Stage With Four New COVID-19 Cases

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Sonora, CA – Four new cases of coronavirus has the county moving from the containment stage to mitigation strategies as it has exceeded the local capacity for lab processing and is relying on multiple external labs.

This brings the total cases to 34 in the county. Three of the cases are linked to the Avalon Care Center cluster and involve staff, as earlier reported here. However, health officials say the vast majority of test results from Avalon are still pending. The newest cases involve all females, ranging in ages from the 30s to 50s.  Three are isolating at home and one woman in her 40s is being hospitalized due to COVID-related issues.

The department also received word of a new positive case of a non-resident under investigation, which will be assigned to their county of residence.

In a written statement released by Tuolumne County Health Officer Dr. Liza Ortiz, she implores county residents and businesses to comply with the state’s coronavirus restrictions as “the data is showing, the virus continues to pose a danger to our county, our state, and our country.”

Adding that county has moved from the containment stage and now needs to focus on mitigation strategies, she advises, “Containment of the disease relies on adequate and timely testing, isolation and quarantine, contact tracing, and case management. When unable to achieve those activities, broader mitigations measures must be used.”

Dr. Ortiz attributes the strategy change to several factors including mass gatherings, traveling to other counties for non-essential needs, and cases that have resulted in many hundreds of contacts. In the written statement, she outlines the stress that has put on her department and testing facilities. Another problem is that not all of those contacted after a positive case is confirmed have cooperated with the quarantine instructions. Also, she points to being “aware that many businesses and facilities are not complying with state guidance and regulations for safe operation.” Dr. Ortiz implores the public to “exercise patience and understanding as we navigate through this pandemic.”

Reminding that not following the public health recommendations and directions could impact family, friends, co-workers, customers, patients, and the county.  She concludes the release by stating, “We can come together; we can do what is necessary to help prevent the spread of COVID19. Thank you for doing your part to protect your loved ones and your community.”

Click here to view Dr. Ortiz’s entire written release.

Regarding the daily testing numbers. Currently, 3,838 tests have been administered with 3,804 testing negative. Out of the 34 cases, 22 are in isolation, 2 are hospitalized and 10 have since recovered. Also, there are three non-resident positive cases identified in the county, but those will be attributed to the county where they reside.

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