State Health Department Flags Increasing Hospitalizations

(SANTA BARBARA, Calif.) — Santa Barbara County Public Health Department (PHD) is working with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to address its increased hospitalization rates of individuals with COVID-19. In a press conference on Monday, June 15, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom stated that CDPH is actively monitoring and working with thirteen counties to provide targeted engagement and technical assistance to help address areas of concern.

Per CDPH, the increased rate of hospitalization in Santa Barbara County is related to cases in the north county region that are attributed to community transmission due to gatherings, workplace transmission followed by household transmission, Skilled Nursing Facility outbreaks (SNF), and an increase in community testing. The average increase in hospitalization rate in a 3-day period should not exceed 10% in order to meet the metric.  

“The increase in hospitalizations and concerns around Skilled Nursing Facilities are just two of the metrics we are monitoring closely when considering how we proceed. We continue to work with the State and Local Partners to find the most effective ways in which we can safely reopen businesses when the time is right for Santa Barbara County,” stated Van Do-Reynoso, Director of the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department.

The County is working with CDPH to address these concerns through key actions including increased community engagement, disease mitigation strategies, continued testing, and maintenance of supplies of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and access to face coverings.

On June 12, 2020, CDPH and the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (CAL OSHA) released guidelines for expanded personal care services with the recommendation that these additional high-risk businesses open no sooner than June 19, 2020. At this time, the current Health Officer Order does not permit these businesses to operate in Santa Barbara County, and they may not open until the order is amended or replaced. PHD is monitoring metrics closely to determine whether or not the order will be amended to open new sectors.

For general questions about COVID-19 locally, residents may call the Santa Barbara County Call Center at (833)-688-5551.  The Call Center is open weekdays (except for holidays) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Stay Connected:
County Public Health:, Twitter and Facebook
County of Santa Barbara:, Twitter, Facebook
County Call Center: (833) 688-5551
Community Wellness Team Information and Referral Line: (805) 364-2750
Behavioral Wellness Crisis Line: (888) 868-1649