New York Times analysis shows Fresno as number one US metro area with fastest rising new COVID cases

Local News
May 04 2021 05:30 pm

CENTRAL VALLEY, Calif. (KGPE) – According to a New York Times analysis, Fresno is the number one metro area in the country where new reported cases are rising the fastest.

It shows that one week ago, the area had 3,188 new reported cases. One week later, it’s at 11,672 new reported cases.

“Number of deaths continues to accelerate. We are in a really grim, challenging time when it comes to the pandemic,” Fresno County Interim Health Officer Dr. Rais Vohra said Friday.

As of Monday, according to the state, the San Joaquin Valley region’s ICU capacity remained at 0%.

Fresno County opened an alternate care site at Community Regional Medical Center on Friday. It’s expected to get more staff to be fully activated in the coming days. With the staff, the site has the ability to care for up to 50 patients.

Fresno County Emergency Medical Services Director Dan Lynch said once the site hits 40 to 45 patients, the county will look to also open the alternate care site inside the Fresno Convention Center.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday that the stay-at-home order in the San Joaquin Valley is likely to be extended.

California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said whether the stay-at-home order is extended or not in the San Joaquin Valley region is determined by where the ICU capacity is projected to be around Jan. 25 — four weeks after Dec. 28, the day the stay-at-home order could have ended.

He said a region’s projected ICU capacity is determined based on the current ICU capacity, the number of new cases on average over a seven-day period and how fast the transmission rate is accelerating.

“At the moment, our projections don’t show that any of the regions that could first exit the stay-at-home order will likely do that,” Ghaly said.

Ghaly said they’re concerned that some regions will exceed even their surge capacities.

“It is true that some counties or some regions may begin to exceed their existing stated hospital capacity, not just ICU capacity, by the end of the month and early in January,” Ghaly said.

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