Coachella Valley coronavirus news and info | Friday, August 14

Cactus Hugs has been tracking local stories about the coronavirus.   For a rundown of all of our updates, click here. Stay safe, stay at a good social distance. Thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs. For ways to keep this website going (and free!), click here.

As of 3 pm Friday, Riverside County officials have confirmed:

  • 45,662 people have officially tested positive for COVID-19.  983 people have been reported positive in the last 24 hours.
  • 881 people are confirmed to have died in the county from the coronavirus. The county reported 2 new deaths in the last 24 hours.

The county notes: “Because of a statewide delay with data collection, the figures displayed for “Confirmed” COVID-19 cases, case rates, positivity rates, doubling time, and number of tests do not accurately reflect the current situation.”

Here’s the latest from the Coachella Valley:

As of 4 pm Friday, San Bernardino County has confirmed:

  • 39,374 people have officially tested positive for COVID-19.
  • 561 people are confirmed to have died in the county from the coronavirus.

As of 4 pm Friday, the State of California has confirmed:

        • 607,605 people have official tested positive for COVID-19.
        • 11,073 people are confirmed to have died in the state of CA from the coronavirus.

Before the updates, a quick note:

Well, here we are.  Five months into the lockdown, at least 168,000 people dead in the country, thousands testing positive every week in the county, The White House seems more focused on slowing down the mail than slowing down the virus, And, because living in the time of a pandemic isn’t bad enough, it’s now a billion degrees in the Coachella Valley and there is no relief in sight. It blows.  It really fucking blows.

And, unfortunately, that’s not all.  There’s also assholes throwing public tantrums over wearing masks, your friends and family posting ridiculous conspiracy theories about a virus that is killing people, and, while many are in need of financial support, congress is on vacation and the President is back at the golf course yet again after spending the last few days going full birther again, because he’s a racist. 

If you are feeling down, anxious, mad, or, if you are like me, can’t even keep track of your emotions anymore, you are not alone. This is hard and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight.  

While it’s easy to focus on things you can do to prevent the spread of the virus (masks, social distancing, washing your hands), there isn’t a lot of attention to taking care of your mental health. This link has some resources to help with coping and also numbers to call or text if you, or someone you know, feels overwhelmed. 

It’s never been more important to take care of yourself and each other. No matter your situation right now, just know: You are important. You are valued. You are loved. 💚🌵

Now the updates…

The Desert Sun asked health experts about the current state of testing in California.  With test results taking, in many cases, 7 days or longer, the tests are basically worthless, according to the experts. “If the test results take over 48 hours or over a week or two weeks to come back, you’ve lost that window to have the test serve its purpose,”  Dr. Thomas Tsai, an assistant professor in health policy and management at the Harvard School of Public Health, told the newspaper. “By the time it comes back two weeks later, it’s an interesting footnote historically but has no role anymore for preventing further spread.”

California become the first state in the US to surpass 600,000 confirmed coronavirus cases this week.  As of Friday morning, there were more than 603,000 recorded cases. The state also has reported over 11,000 deaths.

You have likely had people on your Facebook timeline mention herd immunity. On Friday, Dr. Anthony Fauci explained the risks with such a move. “If everyone contracted it, even with the relatively high percentage of people without symptoms … a lot of people are going to die,” Fauci said. “You look at the United States of America, with our epidemic of obesity as it were. With the number of people with hypertension. With the number of people with diabetes. If everyone got infected, the death toll would be enormous and totally unacceptable,” he added.

Lift to Rise and other local agencies have partnered together to give out $33 million dollars, federally funded, to those experiencing COVID-19 related hardships.  The next application window begins this weekend.  You can get more info here.

KMIR looked into the prospect of the Coachella Valley hosting large festivals during the pandemic and, this isn’t going to surprise you, it’s not happening.

Stein Mart has announced they are closing all of their stores, including the three in the Coachella Valley.

Your passport is basically useless now.  The Atlantic explains.


The election is 80 days away:

  • You can register to vote here.  
  • Sign up for updates on your mail-in ballot here.
  • Sign up to be a poll worker in Riverside County here.

On that last bullet up there, A 2018 study from Pew Research Center showed the majority of U.S. poll workers, 58 percent, were over 60 years old.  They are at a high-risk group during the pandemic. If you can, consider being a poll worker. 


Stay cool.  Stay safe.  Wear a mask.

Thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs.

Anything we missed? Let us know about it.