Solano County to test first responders and medical personnel this week – FEMA delivers 2500 test kits

Solano County says 88 have COVID-19; testing to begin for first responders on Wednesday

Vallejo Times-Herald, by John Glidden, April 6, 2020

Solano County reported 15 new COVID-19 infections on Monday, bringing the county’s total number of Novel Coronavirus cases to 88.

Officials began posting data on the number of cases in each Solano County city. Officials had originally resisted providing that information, arguing it violated the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

The city of Vallejo has the most COVID-19 cases at 28, closely followed by Fairfield’s 26. Vacaville has 14 reported infections, while the cities of Benicia, Dixon, Rio Vista, Suisun City, and unincorporated areas of the county all had less than 10 cases, according to the county.

Office of Emergency Services Manager Don Ryan said by phone Monday that the county will begin testing first responders and medical personnel at the Solano County Fairgrounds on Wednesday.

He stressed that the testing is not open to the general public, noting that tests for the public may begin next week, depending on supplies and the availability of personnel.

Ryan said the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provided the county with about 2,500 testing kits. The goal is test the medical personnel and first responders through Friday, he said.

“Of course, since they interact with the public so much, we want to make sure they are not spreading it,” he said.

Ryan said he hopes to test about 250 each day.

Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan said by phone on Monday said the testing was “sorely needed.”

“I’m thankful they are doing this,” he added.

County officials reported last week that an 85-year-old person was the first confirmed death associated with COVID-19.

They said the individual had recently traveled outside the country and had multiple severe underlying health conditions.

A bulk of the total cases, 64, are considered “non-severe,” according to the county. For this designation, there are 51 cases for individuals between the ages of 19 and 64, and 13 for persons 65 and older.