By Jana Baltazar Solvang Journal Editor
The first COVID-19 fatality in Santa Barbara County reports 1st death. The victim was a North County resident in their 60s with existing health conditions. The individual was reportedly receiving help from a ventilator in the Intensive Care Unit at Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria.
Officials strongly encourage everybody to take social distancing and shelter-at-home policy more seriously after the news about the first confirmed death from the virus circulated.
As of April 3rd, 5 pm Santa Barbara County reached a total of 155 cases and Santa Ynez Valley (Buelton Solvang Santa Ynez) total 5 cases reported.
“We all care about each other deeply and take pride in helping others. This is the most important moment in our lives. If we all take personal responsibility for our own actions, we can protect our community’s well-being and health,” 2nd District Supervisor Gregg Hart said.
The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department also announced that there are already 139 positive cases of the virus mostly from the age range of 50 to 69 years old. While 81 are already recovering at home, it is still not a reason to celebrate because there are still 181 pending cases.
Moreover, the Public Health Department is getting a better tracking of the case numbers now that county testing results from commercial labs have also greatly increased over the past few days.
Meanwhile, despite the capacity of existing hospitals to care enough patients, officials still continue searching potential sites for additional patients if an even larger surge occurs.