Coachella Valley coronavirus news and info | Tuesday, July 14

(📸: Sue Farris)

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 Tuesday, Riverside County officials have confirmed:

  • 26,481 people have officially tested positive for COVID-19.  733 people have been reported positive since Friday
  • 553 people are confirmed to have died in the county from the coronavirus. This number includes 3 people reported dead since Monday.

Here’s the latest from the Coachella Valley:

As of 3 pm Tuesday, San Bernardino County has confirmed:

  • 19,502 people have officially tested positive for COVID-19.
  • 307 people are confirmed to have died in the county from the coronavirus.

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

      • 333,356 people have official tested positive for COVID-19.
      • 7,089 people are confirmed to have died in the state of CA from the coronavirus.


Riverside County’s Public Health Director, Kim Saruwatari, said on Tuesday that the county’s positivity rate is currently 20%.  That is nearly three times the state’s threshold of 8%. Public Health Officer Dr. Cameron Kaiser advised residents not to gather with people from outside your home, warning that if the county doesn’t reduce these kinds of high-risk transmissions, “then the state will step in and make us.”

Riverside County set a new high for coronavirus hospital patients in intensive care on Monday.  139 COVID-19 patients were in the ICU, up from 116 in the Friday.

Test results in Riverside County might be delayed a week or longer due to “national problems with laboratory processing,” the county’s public health officer said Tuesday.

A federal medical team is being deployed to Eisenhower Health hospital in Rancho Mirage to support the facility as it continues to cop with the influx of coronavirus patients. “The hospital is nearing capacity in our ICU and on our COVID-19 units,” Dr. Alan Williamson, the hospital’s chief medical officer, said. “Currently, we only have three more ‘staffed’ beds available in the ICU. Additionally, we are approaching 80 percent of bed capacity within the hospital, but are at virtually 100 percent of our staffing capacity.” The team of doctors, physician assistants, critical care nurses and respiratory technicians assigned to the hospital is part of a statewide request for federal support.


Palm Springs Councilmember Christy Holstege took to Twitter to ask the state to prioritize the Coachella Valley for economic relief, as the region will have a harder time adapting to doing business outside, seeing as how it can be 120 degrees this time of year:

Moderna announced on Tuesday results of a Phase 1 study for a potential coronavirus vaccine.  These early results, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that the vaccine worked to trigger an immune response with mild side effects – fatigue, chills, headache, muscle pain, pain at the injection site. The vaccine is now expected to begin a large Phase 3 trial later this month, the final trial stage before regulators consider whether to make the vaccine available.

Dr. Anthony Fauci was upbeat on Tuesday when speaking about a potential vaccine, saying the world should see one in a year to year-and-a-half.  “So right away, I’m feeling much better about getting a vaccine that’s distributed not only within our country, but then to be able to have doses for people throughout the world, who cannot afford, nor are they in a situation where it’s very easy for them to get vaccinated,” Fauci said.

While cases spike and hospitals fill up around the country, Donald Trump once agian claimed testing is “working too much”:


The Trump administration has walked back a policy that would have taken away the visas of international college students if their coursework was entirely online, ending a proposed plan that had thrown the higher education world into turmoil and spurned lawsuits from Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Despite the governor ordering gyms to close again in Riverside County, Fitness Mania in the city of Riverside is refusing. “Our First Amendment speaks clearly, we are here for the people and if they choose to come, we are here,” the owner told NBC Los Angeles. “We want to stay open, we can’t close. If we close, we will lose everything we have.”  The owner also doesn’t require those entering the business to wear masks.


Thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs.

These are stressful times for all of us. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and our desert community stronger. This link has some resources to help with coping and also numbers to call or text if you, or someone you know, feels overwhelmed.

Please, take care of yourself and each other. You are important. You are valued. You are loved. 💚🌵

Anything we missed? Let us know about it.