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Santa Barbara County confirms 19 new COVID-19 cases, bringing total to 373
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Santa Barbara County

Santa Barbara County confirms 19 new COVID-19 cases, bringing total to 373

Nineteen coronavirus cases were confirmed by the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department Friday, bring the total to 373, 221 of which are active. 

The only known outbreak at a congregate living setting in the county is at the Federal Penitentiary in Lompoc, where 80 inmates and 30 prison employees have been confirmed for the virus. Six of the 19 new cases are associated with the Lompoc outbreak, said Public Health Director Van Do-Reynoso.

Currently, 43 individuals remain hospitalized in the county with 14 in intensive care units.

On Thursday, public health officials announced the third coronavirus-related death in the county, a South County individual in their seventies who passed away in hospice care. 

According to Do-Reynoso, the individual was in hospice care prior to contracting the virus, with an investigation by the department determining that the virus was not spread to any other individuals in hospice care.

Public health officials have noted that the level of hospitalizations has remained stable throughout the county, leaving the county with time to prepare for future surges. 

"Your singular actions are making a resounding difference in flattening the COVID-19 curve in Santa Barbara County," Do-Reynoso said, commending the public for continued commitment to hygiene and social distancing. 

In order to gain a clearer picture of spread in the county, the Public Health Department has been contacting people with confirmed cases to gather demographic data for cases thus far. 

The data, including breakdowns of race and ethnicity, will be presented at the County Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Do-Reynoso said. 

Laura Place covers city government for the Santa Maria Times.

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Santa Maria City Reporter

Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Laura Place covers city government, policy and elections in Santa Maria and Santa Barbara County. Follow her on Twitter @itslaurasplace

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