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Community reacts to surge of Covid-19 cases at Oroville Hospital

Some people in Oroville say they are upset that the community was not notified about the coronavirus outbreak at the local hospital. Reporter Kristian Lopez brought their concerns to Butte County Public Health Officials.

Posted: Nov 30, 2020 7:35 PM

OROVILLE, Calif. - Some people in Oroville are upset that the community was not notified about the coronavirus outbreak at the local hospital.

Butte County Public Health (BCPH) says it will not notify people about an outbreak unless they are not able to identify the people who were in close contact.

BCPH, Public information Officer Lisa Almaguer, says close contact is identified as being within six feet of someone without PPE. for more than 15 minutes. Almaguer says they have been working closely with the hospital to interview people who were infected and see what floors they were on and who they were in contact with.

Despite this, some people say an outbreak this big should have been announced.

RELATED: Head of Infection Control confirms around 40 Covid-19 cases among staff at Oroville Hospital

“To have that many people infected and not tell the public when people are going in and out of the emergency room, and doing tests and whatever, to not tell people that many people are infected is nuts, said David LaChance.

“I just hope they are doing every step and measure to keep us safe,” said Duane Jones.

Butte County Public Health says the risk of health care workers infecting patients is low because hospital workers wear multiple layers of PPE. They added, the risk is higher between co-workers if there is socialization going on.

Almaguer says if an employee or patient believes they may have been exposed they should alert their health care provider.

Despite multiple attempts, Action News Now was not able to reach health officials at the Oroville Hospital for comment on Monday.

BCPH says this is one of the largest outbreaks the county has seen.

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