Local COVID-19 case count could be higher due to issues with reporting system

News

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KGPE) – In an announcement Tuesday, the California Department of Public Health there are issues with the lab reporting system, likely leading to an underreporting of cases at the local level.

Fresno County Interim Health Officer Dr. Rais Vohra says they were informed of this and have questions they haven’t gotten answers to from the state. He said what concerns him is the impact this could have on contact tracing.

“That’s something that does worry me, it’s not just the undercounting, it’s the delay in reporting will hamper our ability to do contact tracing and medical investigations,” says Vohra. “If a person waits too long to hear from us to get their diagnosis, they might actually go and leave isolation.”

The county health department says the issue affects both positive and negative tests.

Kings County is also experiencing data delays through the state’s disease registry system CalREDIE, according to its COVID-19 webpage.

The State Department of Public Health announced that a team has been deployed to help fix the issue. The department has also instructed all labs in California to manually report all positive cases to the local public health departments.

However, the problem does not affect the COVID-19 hospitalization and ICU numbers reported.

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