More Coronavirus Cases And Deaths Reported Around Bay Area

KCBS Radio Midday News
March 25, 2020 - 12:26 pm
This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses.

Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM

Bay Area officials have confirmed dozens of new coronavirus cases Wednesday as the number of cases in the region has exceeded 1,000 in recent days.

The growing outbreak now means that students across six Bay Area counties will not go back to school until May at the earliest. Officials in San Francisco, Alameda, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Contra Costa and Marin Counties as well as the city of Berkeley announced Wednesday that all public schools will now be closed through May 1. Several districts have already announced that free grab-and-go lunches will remain available through the extended closure. 

In San Francisco, officials have announced the city’s first death related to the virus. The patient was a man in his forties with multiple underlying medical conditions. 

San Mateo County also announced four more deaths, bringing the county’s total to five and the region’s total to 27. Health officials have not released more details on the patients. 

Three employees at the Laguna Honda Hospital and Rehabilitation center in San Francisco have now tested positive for the virus, raising fears of a wider outbreak at the city-run nursing facility which houses about 750 of some of the city’s most vulnerable residents. Another city employee in the SF Municipal Transit Agency has tested positive although officials have not released more information.

Santa Clara County continues to have the highest number of cases in the Bay Area, with 375 cases in the county as of Monday evening. 

In Santa Rosa, three police officers have tested positive for the virus and several others are under self-quarantine. Police say of the three who tested positive, one had only minimal contact with the public in recent weeks and the other two have had no contact. 

The California Highway Patrol says one of its Bay Area officers - a uniformed officer working in Oakland - has tested positive for the virus as well. The agency says it is working with the Alameda County Public Health Department to ensure that its Oakland area office is properly sanitized. This is the second positive case in the agency, after an officer in Sacramento tested positive. 

And as a shelter in place order remains in effect for the state of California, fears of a recession are growing. The latest poll from the Bay Area Council, which tracks residents’ biggest concerns, has found that 60% of residents now expect the economy to decline over the next six months. That is a stark contrast to the last six years worth of polls that have reflected optimism about the economy. 

Alameda, Marin, San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties all passed emergency moratoriums on evictions Tuesday to protect residents who may have lost their jobs or have otherwise been financially impacted by the outbreak. A similar ordinance is in effect already in San Francisco.

San Mateo County Supervisors also created a $3 million emergency relief fund to support residents, non-profits and small businesses. Supervisor David Canepa says it is being funded by a public-private partnership with the Silicon Valley Foundation. Officials there are also working with banks to see if they can provide relief to homeowners who have to make mortgage payments. 

And after the first weekend under a shelter-in-place order saw large crowds at public parks and beaches, local officials are now closing the parking lots at beaches in Pacifica and Half Moon Bay to prevent gatherings. The closures impact Linda Mar and Rockaway beaches in Pacifica, and Poplar, Redondo and Miramontes beaches in Half Moon Bay. 

San Francisco Mayor London Breed issued a stern warning to residents Monday to maintain social distancing and says public parks in the city could close if crowds continue this weekend. 

Written by Jessica Yi.