For Immediate ReleaseMarch 11, 2020
Residents can slow disease spread with simple, everyday behaviors
San Rafael, CA – The Marin County Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has confirmed that two additional Marin residents have tested positive for COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, bringing the local total to three.
Both individuals lived with Marin’s first reported case, who was a passenger on the Grand Princess – Mexican Rivera cruise ship that experienced an outbreak of COVID-19. The newly diagnosed cases had been isolated in their home and are experiencing mild symptoms but do not require hospitalization.
Marin HHS will not release additional information about the patients or the treating hospital to protect the medical privacy of the patients and family.
“Unfortunately, this doesn’t come as a surprise,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County’s Public Health Officer. “These individuals were at high risk based on very close contact.”
Testing for two additional household members is pending.
“We fully expect to see more cases in Marin,” Willis said. “Given the number of cases in the Bay Area, we will see transmission within our community. Our ultimate goal is to limit the trajectory of COVID-19.”
The news comes on the day Marin opened a COVID-19 testing facility to enhance countywide capacity for testing. Individuals referred by their physicians can complete drive-through testing without having to get out of their vehicle.
The best way to prevent the spread of germs in the community, whether flu or COVID-19, is to practice good hygiene:
· Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing;
· Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water is not available;
· Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue or crook of your elbow (not your hands). If you use a tissue, throw it away and wash your hands afterward;
· Avoid touching your face;
· Stay home from work or school if you have a fever or are feeling sick;
· Avoid close contact with people who are sick;
· Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe;
· Get your flu shot to protect against flu.
Individuals can visit the official Marin County Coronavirus webpage (MarinHHS.org/coronavirus) to review answers to frequently asked questions or subscribe to receive email updates. In addition, residents can contact Marin HHS with nonmedical COVID-19 questions by calling a dedicated information call center at 415-473-7191 or by email.
Dr. Matthew WillisPublic Health OfficerHealth and Human Services
3240 Kerner Blvd.San Rafael, CA 94901(415) 473-4163Email: Dr. Matthew WillisMarin HHS website