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IC health department says coronavirus patients did not expose virus to community


EL CENTRO, Calif. (KYMA, KECY), Coronavirus is now a reality in Imperial County with two confirmed case, but Imperial County Health officials are saying not to panic because the patients did not expose the virus to the community.

The Imperial County Public Health Department has confirmed two positive cases for coronavirus as well as two negative cases.

The only info released by health officials is that one of the patients is a woman in her 70’s being treated at the El Centro Regional Medical Center and the other patient is the woman’s partner who is self-quarantined at home.

Health officials could not confirm what city the patients live in and according to them the couple was exposed to the virus in Florida.

“It is very important that everyone understand that these cases are travel related, they were not exposed here in Imperial County," said Dr. Stephen Munday, County health Officer.

County health officials said the couple arrived sick from Florida and immediately sought help at El Centro Regional Medical Center according to them the patients did not expose the virus to residents in the valley.

“There is not at this time any evidence that we have community spread of COVID-19 and that’s very important because that will guide decisions to what interventions should take place," said Munday.

The health department has not taken drastic measures within the county, but they are suggesting that all mass gatherings be canceled or postponed as suggested by the federal government.

“We are recommending that people, especially high risk people, avoid non essential travel even if its local," said Munday.

Meanwhile, El Centro Regional Medical Center said that doctors and nurses that are treating coronavirus patients are taking extra safety measures so they themselves are not exposed to the virus.

“We’ve taken precautions for our staff; they have specific guidelines that was provided to them. Making sure they are wearing the right gear. Training and testing for that occurred a month ago and is ongoing," said Adolphe Edward, ECRMC, CEO.

ECRMC officials were not able to provide us with a health status for the couple.

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Alexandra Rangel

Alexandra Rangel joined KSWT in March 2019 as a multimedia journalist.


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