Riverside County health officials confirmed 37 more coronavirus cases Wednesday and reported the first COVID-19 fatality outside of the Coachella Valley, bringing the countywide death toll to eight and overall case number to 107.
The latest death was a man in his 70s living in an area public health officials call the county’s mid-region, which includes Banning, Hemet and Anza, according to Jose Arballo, spokesman for the Riverside University Health System.
With 37 new cases, Wednesday saw the county’s largest single-day bump in infections since the first case was reported March 8.
Prior to the newest numbers being released, the county’s COVID-19 case map showed the Coachella Valley with the highest number of prior or ongoing infections, at 31. The northwestern county had 25 cases, the southwest region had 12 and the mid-county with one.
Another resident who acquired the virus while traveling aboard a cruise ship remains in Northern California, officials said.
Details on the locations of the 37 new patients will be released Thursday.
Of the 107 cases, 24 were determined to have been acquired locally, four were travel-associated and 79 are under investigation to verify origin.
Members of the California National Guard on Wednesday began setting up a temporary hospital at the Riverside County Fairgrounds in Indio in anticipation of an expected surge of local COVID- 19 cases.
The 125-bed “federal medical station’ will be equipped with all necessary equipment and will help ease the burden on the local hospital system, said Brooke Federico, a county spokeswoman. It is expected to take 10 days to build and remain open for eight weeks, officials said.
Another temporary hospital will soon be set up in western Riverside County, she said. That site will have another 125 beds, but additional information, including the location, was not provided.
Late Tuesday night, officials reported an employee at an Amazon fulfillment center in Moreno Valley tested positive for the virus.
“It is not known if the worker lives in the city of Moreno Valley because everyone’s personal medical information is considered private,” according to Moreno Valley Mayor Yxstian Alberto Gutierrez. “The worker is undergoing treatment, and several co-workers have been directed to self- quarantine and are under observation by health officials.”
Cities across Riverside County have implemented local emergency measures synthesized with the county’s requirements and recommendations from the California Department of Public Health.
Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an executive order on Thursday advising that all individuals who are not involved in essential services stay home.
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