RIVERSIDE (CNS) – The number of COVID-19 cases in Riverside County now stands at 7,341, with 313 fatalities.
County heath officials Thursday reported seven more coronavirus fatalities and 89 newly confirmed infections. The number of people hospitalized in Riverside County suffering from coronavirus decreased by eight to 199, which includes 66 patients who are being treated in intensive care units.
The county’s hospital numbers include non-residents who are being treated for COVID-19 within the county’s borders, Riverside University Health System officials told City News Service on Thursday.
Nearly one-third of the patients currently hospitalized for coronavirus in Riverside County are from neighboring Imperial County, which has seen its two hospitals exceed their hospital bed capacity for COVID-19 patients.
According to RUHS researcher Dr. Geoffrey Leung, the countywide hospitalization rate for COVID-19 cases has been flat for the past few weeks, generally remaining below 200, while the “positivity rate” from coronavirus screenings has ranged from 2% to 4%, figures that did not raise red flags.
More than 110,000 Riverside County residents have been tested for the virus as of Thursday afternoon, which accounts for more than 4% of the county’s population of nearly 2.5 million.
Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday cleared the way for barbershops and hair salons to open in counties that have been cleared to move deeper into California’s reopening roadmap, including Riverside County.
Riverside is one of 47 counties in the state that have been granted “regional variances” needed to open more types of businesses. Restrictions on in-person dining and shopping were lifted in time for the Memorial Day weekend.
The Gardens on El Paseo, an outdoor shopping center in Palm Desert, reopened on Tuesday, although only a handful of shops were operational. The Westfield Mall, also in Palm Desert, is set to reopen on Friday.
Officials at both shopping centers readying to welcome customers said they will have limited hours and will implement robust cleaning protocols, with a focus on high-touch areas.
Desert Hills Premium Outlets in Cabazon, which had been shuttered since March due to COVID-19, reopened on Tuesday.