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May 21, 2022

Coronavirus case found in PVUSD school

County announces third, fourth cases

APTOS—Pajaro Valley Unified School District announced Wednesday it is closing Rio Del Mar Elementary School for two days after a person there tested positive for coronavirus.

District officials are not saying what the person’s relationship to the school is. They were last at the school on Feb. 28, making Friday the end of the two-week incubation period suggested for coronavirus-related school closures, PVUSD spokeswoman Alicia Jimenez said. 

The patient is stable and the exposure is still under investigation, Santa Cruz County spokesman Jason Hoppin said.

The case at Rio Del Mar marked one of two additional confirmed cases in the county Wednesday, bringing the total to four.

The other case is a patient who had symptoms of COVID-19 on Tuesday night. The patient is isolated and hospitalized in a different county and is recovering. 

“Although the exposure is still under investigation, it is unlikely that it was acquired through community-spread in Santa Cruz County,” Hoppin said.

The first case in the county was announced Saturday and the second was announced two days later.

The Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday declared a local emergency in response to the increasing numbers of coronavirus cases.

The board also ratified a Mar. 4 declaration by Santa Cruz County Health Officer Dr. Gail Newel of a local health emergency.

The declaration allows the Health Services Agency to bring in other county employees to help with the response to the virus, and also allows the county to receive a piece of the $42 million in federal funding set aside for California to deal with the outbreak, HSA Director Mimi Hall said.

The HSA on Monday released a set of “social distancing” guidelines created to help slow the spread of the virus by reducing everyone spends in face-to-face interactions.

The City of Watsonville also declared a local emergency at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting. City Manager Matt Huffaker said the declaration allows the City to freely work with neighboring jurisdictions if COVID-19 spreads in South County.

“If needed, if we have a full-blown outbreak in this area, we can access other services,” Huffaker said.

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