SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — San Francisco public health officials on Monday confirmed that the city has now reported 374 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with six fatalities connected to the deadly virus.
“My heart goes out to the family members and the friends of those who we have lost in San Francisco,” Mayor London Breed said during a press conference updating the city’s response to the coronavirus crisis. “This is a very deadly virus as you are seeing throughout not just San Francisco, but throughout the country, and the reason why we have taken significant steps has everything to do with saving lives and protecting public health.”
Breed also told residents to prepare to stay home through May 1 amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Breed said more details about the shelter order’s extension, in conjunction with other Bay Area counties, would be released Tuesday.
COMPLETE COVERAGE: CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC
“I can’t reiterate how important it is for all of us to comply,” she said. “It’s so important we continue to uplift one another and be there for one another as much as we possibly can.”
The number of confirmed cases in the city includes nine health care workers and two residents at Laguna Honda Hospital, a long-term care facility, all of whom are in stable condition, the city’s Health Director Dr. Grant Colfax said.
“We will continue to do everything we can to protect Laguna Honda’s residents and staff,” Colfax said.
So far, the Department of Public Health has tested 158 employees and 54 residents at the hospital for COVID-19. Eighty-eight employee tests are underway.
Of the employees, two have tested positive, while two residents also tested positive and another resident’s results are pending. Thirty-five other employees got tested through their health care provider, resulting in seven additional cases of employees testing positive, according to Colfax.
“We know that long-term care facilities are at most risk for coronavirus outbreaks, therefore we expect the situation to unfortunately get worse,” he said.
Infectious disease physicians and epidemiologists with expertise in epidemics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and infection nurses from the California Department of Public Health visited the hospital’s campus on Monday.
The experts are assessing the situation and making recommendations for ongoing management of an outbreak that is expected to escalate. They’ll also help develop a prospective outbreak and prevention plan for long term care facilities, Colfax said.
Additionally, the state public health nurses will also create expanded protocols on cleaning, personal protective equipment and staff safety.
Since the outbreak at Laguna Honda, first reported last week, the city’s Department of Public Health has restricted visitors at the hospital, placed the campus on quarantine and is now requiring staff to wear isolation masks, health officials said.
On top of the infectious disease experts that arrived Monday, the city has also requested more than 100 additional staff, including infection control nurses and testing personnel among other staff, from the state and federal government and Mayor Breed is awaiting a response.