The County of Tulare Public Health Branch confirmed on Saturday, March 28, the first death from COVID-19 in the county. The person who passed away was the third positive case of COVID-19 reported by the Tulare County Public Health Branch on March 16, 2020, and had been hospitalized for several weeks. The patient died less than two weeks later, on March 28, 2020. How the patient became exposed is unknown and continues to be under investigation. Tulare County records first
“Public Health extends our deepest condolences to the patient’s loved ones in the wake of this tragedy,” said Dr. Karen Haught, Tulare County Public Health Officer. “We are facing a historic public health challenge and know this is a very difficult time. Our top priority continues to be protecting the health of our community, and we continue to ask that community members protect themselves and their loved ones by staying home.” Tulare County records first
The Tulare County Public Health Branch continues to work closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), and their local partners as the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve.
Dr. Haught strongly urged community members to follow the governor’s stay-at-home order to “flatten the curve” and slow the spread of COVID-19. Tulare County records first
The county Public Health Branch advises that citizens take action to protect themselves from COVID-19 by following guidance concerning health hygiene: stay home, practice social distancing when shopping, shop only as needed for essential goods, wash hands often with soap and water, cover coughs and sneezes, stay home when ill, avoid sick people, and frequently wash surfaces with regular home cleaners.
The Tulare County Health and Human Services Agency is diligent about the protection of patient privacy in compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and for this reason, they will not release any other information about the patient.
“The information we release about the positive COVID-19 cases in Tulare County is carefully curated to provide useful information to our community members, while also excluding information that would lead to the identification of patients,” said Dr. Haught. “This is a protection, provided by law, that is extended to everyone.” Tulare County records first
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