RIDGECREST REGIONAL HOSPITAL CONFIRMS SECOND POSITIVE COVID-19 TEST RESULT FROM A SAMPLE COLLECTED AT THE HOSPITAL

Friday, March 27, 2020, RIDGECREST, Calif. – Ridgecrest Regional Hospital (RRH) has confirmed that a second person has tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) from a sample collected at the hospital. Kern County Public Health Services Department is responsible for investigating this case to determine potential exposure sources and any contacts the patient may have had.

“We had expected this,” said Jim Suver, President/CEO of Ridgecrest Regional Hospital. “Yesterday we released the news of our first confirmed case of the coronavirus, today we release news of the second and we expect to see more as community transmission or spread is likely occurring in Kern County.”

“Community Spread means the virus is in the area and is being spread person-to person,” said Leslie O'Neill, RN Infection Preventionist at RRH. “We get the virus either by coming in contact with an infected person, or by touching something they touched- a doorknob, a faucet, a counter- then we touch our eyes, nose or mouth. This virus spreads very easily, and can be spread by people who don’t even feel sick. To stop community spread, we must stay away from people by staying home unless it is absolutely necessary to go out, and washing hands or using hand sanitizer whenever we touch a potentially contaminated surface.”

Suver continued, “The hospital has been preparing for this event for weeks now and we are ready to do what is necessary to keep our community safe. We have adequate ICU beds and ventilators to care for our community at this time. Finally, we are reminding the community once again to continue following all of the recommended precautions.”

RRH has announced that it will no longer continue to announce every confirmed test case from the hospital, but will continue to keep the community informed of significant developments as information is made available. RRH is regularly sharing the numbers released by region from Kern County Public Health and encourages the community to visit the county website for the latest and most up to date numbers (https://kernpublichealth.com/2019-novel-coronavirus/).

Protective measures as recommended by Kern County Public Health:

  • Stay at home except for essential needs.
  • Wash hands with soap and water often.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. Follow package instructions for proper disinfecting.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or your elbow.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay away from work, school or other people if you become sick.
  • Those 65 and older or other high risk groups should self-isolate.

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