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COVID-19 cases in Santa Barbara jail more than double to 50+

Santa Barbara County's Main Jail at 4436 Calle Real
Santa Barbara County's Main Jail at 4436 Calle Real

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – COVID-19 cases in the Santa Barbara County Main Jail have more than doubled in less than a week.

Officials say the jail has continued with follow-up testing for the outbreak that was first announced earlier this month. Since then, jail staff have identified an additional 35 COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to 59 as part of this latest outbreak.

Less than one week ago, the total number of positive cases related to this outbreak was 24.

None of the positive inmates in this outbreak have required hospitalization and 50 of them are asymptomatic, sheriff's officials said. 54 of the cases are considered to be still active.

The sheriff's office says all COVID-19 positive inmates are continuously monitored by custody staff and WellPath, the health care company contracted at the jail.

This outbreak was first reported on Dec. 9, just a few weeks after the sheriff's office announced another outbreak had been cleared.

The jail has experienced several outbreaks of COVID-19 among inmates and staff since the beginning of the pandemic.

It is unclear if any sheriff's employees at the main jail have tested positive for COVID-19 as part of this latest outbreak. Staff with direct contact with inmates are required to be regularly tested and wear N95 masks, the sheriff's office said.

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Travis Schlepp

Travis Schlepp is the Digital Content Director for News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Travis, click here.

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