Santa Clara County Reports More Than 1,200 COVID-19 Cases

Santa Clara County health officials reported an additional 59 confirmed cases of COVID-19 today, bringing the total up to 1,207.

No new deaths were reported on Sunday, so the local death toll remains at 39. Meanwhile, the county reports that nearly 11,000 people have been tested, and that 211 of their results are still pending. The positive testing rate, based on reported data, is 11.09 percent and the average turnaround time for results is 2.36 days.

As of today, Santa Clara County’s 11 hospitals were treating 286 COVID-19 patients, according to the health department’s new coronavirus dashboards. Some 175 are in acute care beds, while 91 are in the ICU. Out of the county’s stash of 652 ventilators, 217 are currently being utilized for both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients.

Santa Clara County currently has a surge capacity of 1,456 beds as the hospital system braces for an influx of patients who will fall ill from the coronavirus.

“The capacity of our health care system to respond to large events is expandable and elastic,” Dr. Jennifer Tong, who’s in charge of the local surge plan for the county health department, told reporters in a press release. “Hospitals in our area are prepared to increase the number of hospital beds available to care for those affected by COVID-19.”

In addition to scaling up the local healthcare system, county officials say they’ve found housing for every COVID-19 patient who is homeless. By Friday, 174 medically vulnerable homeless individuals have already been placed in some kind of shelter and 215 more will have a place to stay in the coming days.

The Valley Homeless Healthcare Program in conjunction with Gardner Health Services have been trying to identify unhoused people who have three or more underlying health conditions that would put them at high risk of complications from the virus.

“We have led the region in addressing homelessness and the housing challenges facing our community,” Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese said in a press release “I commend the County’s Office of Supportive Housing for ensuring that every COVID-positive member of community is off the streets.”

Bay Area health officials Thursday night also issued new guidance to help slow the spread of the coronavirus. Residents are now encouraged to wear face masks when venturing out for essential errands like going to the grocery store or the doctor’s office.

“We know that a person can spread the virus before they develop symptoms, or even if they never develop symptoms,” Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody said in a press release. “Face coverings are not a substitute for sheltering in place, frequent hand-washing, and social distancing, but they do provide an additional layer of prevention when engaging in essential activities.”

However, residents are discouraged from wearing medical masks such as N95 respirators since there is a global shortage of personal protective equipment for doctors and nurses. Instead, health officials suggest using bandanas or some other homemade fabric mask.

The new recommendation comes from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, which has changed its guidance as scientists are learning more about how people can be infectious days before they start showing symptoms.

Grace Hase is a staff writer for San Jose Inside and Metro Silicon Valley. Email tips to [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at @grace_hase.

14 Comments

  1. “people can be infectious”. Let’s say people can be contagious from this infectious disease.

  2. Grace: why is the death toll being zero less important than the test #s, which everyone realizes are dated and less important? Do you write the headlines?

  3. The CDC continues to “change its guidance” incessantly, sometimes within 24 hours. The CDC continues to make it up as it goes along, which doesn’t inspire any confidence. Yet the sheep we have become comply without question. Every few days we are told that next week is going to be the big surge. So far, the constantly predicted tsunami has been little more than shore break.
    Dr. Cody’s use of H&S Code §120295 et seq. to order a countywide shelter in place is misplaced. That whole series of statutes relates to quarantines. Those statutes authorize a quarantine of individual persons and businesses after they have been individually served with an order of quarantines. They do not authorize “shelter in place” of the entire population of the county. So far the ACLU has questioned this practice only as it applies to jail inmates and illegal aliens. All of us law abiding citizens must fend for ourselves. But that’s OK for the nation of sheep we have become.
    There is no question that avoiding as much personal contact with others as possible reduces the possibility of spreading the virus. But sequestering entire counties, states, etc. is not constitutionally permissible absent a declaration of martial law. But that is on the horizon, so my entire argument may soon be rendered moot.
    Seasonal flu deaths in the US last flu season were estimated at about 55,000. No-one noticed. There was no hysteria like we are experiencing with COVID-19, which has a US death toll of only around 10,000, but neither the government nor the press will tell us how many of those who died had underlying health problems. Local government’s response to COVID has been to spend a lot of time, energy, and money on criminals people like London Breed want to release from jail, and homeless drug addicts and schizophrenics who will be getting free luxury hotel rooms, while ignoring the millions of workers now unemployed and tens of thousands of businesses closed.
    The “public health crisis” is nothing compared to the destruction of the entire economy of the USA. People will die of the corona virus, and that is sad for their friends and families. Death is a part of life. But the destruction of the greatest economy ever to exist is a far greater loss than a few thousand lives. The press spends the vast majority of its time fanning the hysteria over COVID, and only lately has started covering the dismantling of our economy to make way for Bernieism, which will be the inevitable result of making all but the 1% reliant on government largesse.

    • The total flu death is 55,000 last year, and that is without quarantine, or shelter in place issued. If we did shelter in place for the flu, the numbers would be much less. Now look at the new virus we have, 10,000 deaths in 4 months and that is with shelter in place rule is implemented. Imagine without the shelter in place rule, we would have deaths surpassing that 55,000 a year death. Also flu is not very contagious compared to covid19 which is very contagious even when asymptomatic. This virus is not an ordinary virus but it was made to kill people. Don’t downplay this virus and give people information that is not safe and helpful. I dont care about the economy when lives are at stake. The destruction of lives is far greater loss, than a economy that can be rebuilt again and again. Without the people, economies and companies wont exist. As you can see the power is in the people, and without people, companies and government will cease to exist, and if you can tell companies have shutdown and closed, and why? Because there are no people, no customers, no more lives. Babylon used to be the greatest economy, and then rome, and then US, and we have had our economy fall before multiple times, but still here we are, living and an economy that has been rebuilt many times. So this is not a loss for the economy but a lesson, a lesson that needed to be learned, a lesson that is necessary to improve our lives/economy and the whole world.

      • > I dont care about the economy when lives are at stake. The destruction of lives is far greater loss, than a economy that can be rebuilt again and again.

        The world wide economy supports a planet of seven billion people.

        If that economy is disrupted significantly, BILLIONS of people will die.

        The “economy” is fundamentally a social system to enable the production of food beyond the limited capacity of tribal foraging. The paleolithic era (before agriculture and food production) showed that the planet can support a population of only about 25 MILLION people based on foraging alone.

        If you like eating regularly and don’t want to see BILLIONS of people dying of starvation or wars, you had better start caring about the economy.

      • We have not been told how many of those who died of COVID had underlying conditions. There is probably no way to tell if those same people would have died of the regular seasonal flu, but my guess is that most of them would have died of the regular flu. Have any autopsies been performed? The CDC has reversed itself on several issues in the last month. Nobody has any firm answers, but the politicians keep posturing. They guess, and when their guess proves inaccurate, they issue a new guess. The press keeps the hysteria alive. The latest numbers for California are 150,000 known cases but only 350deaths, out of over 36 MILLION people. Those numbers are nowhere near justification for destroying an economy and imprisoning those in the population who were either already unemployed or who do not work in an “essential business”, many of which designations are totally arbitrary. In which of those 2 categories are you, Steve?

  4. Steve, you just made all that up. You have NO way of knowing if any of that is true. Even the so called “experts don’t know that to be true. I’m not saying it is not true, but there are plenty of very smart people out there that would disagree with you.

  5. Just heard a report on KCBS saying the virus case will spike in CA Next month. That claim was unattributed, but it does underline the moving target we keep getting fed by the media.

  6. How many COVID-19 patients in Santa Clara Country are on ventilators? The reports from the county only state the total number of patients (COVID-19 plus other patients). Could it be that zero COVID-19 patients are on ventilators?

  7. How COVID-19 patients in Santa Clara County are on ventilators? The county report only states the total (COVID-19 plus other patients) in its daily report.

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