(KTXL) – The San Joaquin Valley Region is the first region in the state to trigger the California Department of Public Health’s hospital surge protocols.
The public health order, which was announced Aug. 16, goes into effect when a region “has less than 10% of staffed adult ICU beds available for a period of three consecutive days or when an individual general acute care hospital has zero ICU capacity.”
For at least the next seven days, all hospitals in the region must adhere to specific guidelines, as provided by the CDPH.
– All general acute care hospitals in the county that do have ICU bed capacity must accept transfer patients when clinically appropriate and directed by the Medical and Health Operational Area Coordinator.
– All general acute care hospitals in the region that do have ICU bed capacity must accept transfer patients when clinically appropriate and directed by the Regional Disaster Medical Health Specialist.
– If there is no ICU bed capacity within the region, then all general acute care hospitals in the State of California must accept transfer patients when clinically appropriate and directed by the California Emergency Medical Services Authority Director or designee.California Department of Public Health
The San Joaquin Valley Region is comprised of: Calaveras, Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, San Benito, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare and Tuolumne counties.
According to CDPH data, the San Joaquin Valley has just 8.6% of its intensive care unit beds available. More than 54% of the region’s ICU beds are being used by COVID-19 patients.
San Joaquin County Public Health Services recently told FOX40 they’re actively working to add more locations, dates and times to meet the growing demand for testing amid the surge in cases.
Earlier this week, Stanislaus County issued an order requiring face coverings to be worn indoors, regardless of vaccination status, beginning Saturday. Tuolumne County instituted a similar order in early August.