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LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 (coronavirus)

San Diego Lab Will Begin Testing Coronavirus Vaccine In Humans

Cover image for podcast episode

A coronavirus vaccine developed in San Diego will undergo human testing this week. Plus: San Diego County health officials have directed hospitals to further restrict equipment used to protect health care workers from the coronavirus, checking in on border crossers amid the border squeeze and more local news you need.

A coronavirus vaccine developed in San Diego will undergo human testing this week.
On Monday, Inovio Pharmaceutical, a Pennsylvania-based company with a local Sorrento Valley lab, said it planned to inject the first of up to 40 volunteers.
Last month, Inovio Senior Vice President Kate Broderick told KPBS that the tests they’ve run in the lab so far have produced good results.
Vaccine_clip
We are extremely encouraged...it’s looking very promising...
Beat
Following in the state’s footsteps, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer on Monday called for health care professionals to come forward to help in the expected surge of COVID-19 cases.
He’s asking for all medical residents, nursing students, retired health care workers or those who have switched professions to sign up to help.
Mayorpresser_4_6
…..we are expecting some time of surge and we must be ready to provide the medical services necessary to save lives. Our city of course “ is known for its expertise in science and health and medicine….so san diego will continue to do its part.

The mayor's call to action follows last week's creation by Gov. Gavin Newsom of the California Health Corps, a state-led effort to recruit additional healthcare professionals to help fight the pandemic.
People can sign up at san diego dot gov slash coronavirus.
Beat
The San Diego Metropolitan Transit System announced Monday it will be reducing bus and trolley service effective next week.

They’ve seen ridership declines because of the pandemic.
The agency won’t cut any routes completely, but rather some routes will see a reduction in service.

MTS officials said proximity to grocery stores, hospitals and other essential areas was taken into account when determining which routes would see reduced service.

Beat

At a press conference Monday, Gov. Newsom said work on a new coronavirus antibody test from Stanford University is “fundamental” and on a fast track for approval.

The test is designed to determine whether people have immunity to COVID-19.
Newsom said it’s an important step in getting people back to work.

And the latest coronavirus count: San Diego County officials on Monday announced 78 new COVID cases, increasing the region’s total to 1,404. No new deaths were reported.

Beat

I’m Kinsee Morlan and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters.

It’s Tuesday, April 7.

Stay with me for more of the local news you need.

Midroll 1

The Acting Secretary of the Navy made a rambling speech to the crew of the USS Roosevelt in Gaum.

KPBS Military Reporter Steve Walsch says leaked video shows him trying to explain why he fired the ship’s captain..

The captain has made national headlines for being critical of the navy’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

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ROOSEVELT PACKAGE

In footage leaked to KPBS, recorded below deck, acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly is heard trying to explain his decision to fire Capt. Brett Crozier. This happened after a letter went public which showed the captain's frustration over the Navy's handling of an outbreak of the coronavirus on board. Secretary Modly said…

ROOSEVELT CAPT 2A
"If he didn't think, it was my opinion, that if he didn't think that information was going to get out into the public in this information age that we live in. That he was A too naive or too stupid to be the commanding officer of a ship like this."

In a sometimes rambling speech to the crew of the San Diego-based carrier Modly insisted the Navy had always taken the situation seriously.

ROOSEVELTCAPT 2B
"No one at my level has been ignoring the situation here from the very beginning. I reached out to your CO through my chief of staff, very very early on in this crisis."

Video posted online last week showed hundreds of sailors cheering for the captain after he left the carrier. At last count 155 crew members have tested positive for the virus. Crew are still being moved off the ship. Over the weekend, the New York Times reported Crozier himself has also tested positive. Steve Walsh KPBS News.

After the leaked audio of the speech was made public, Mode-ly first said he stood by his words, but then later issued an apology and said he does not think Crow-sher is naive or stupid.

Beat

San Diego county health officials have directed hospitals to further restrict equipment used to protect health care workers from the coronavirus.

KPBS Health Reporter Tarryn Mento says a new alert directs facilities to follow crisis strategies to conserve gear during the national shortage.

___________________________________________
PREALERT PACKAGE
Many facilities have already been taking steps to conserve masks and other protective equipment. But the county's alert indicates the shortage is affecting most if not all medical centers in the region.

It recommends facilities prioritize equipment such as gowns and masks for procedures that can make the virus airborne, like intubation, where a tube is put through the mouth and into an airway. That means health care workers may forgo the medical gear in other situations that usually call for it.

Philip Grenier (Griner) is the director of the nursing school at San Diego State University. He says conservation strategies mean limiting access to the best defense health care workers have against the virus.

(:06)"We don't have an immunization that we can give to providers. We don't have a cure."

The county says it has distributed more than 1 million individual items of protective equipment to facilities and is seeking more from the state and federal governments. The alert says future shipments will be distributed on a priority basis.

Tarryn Mento, KPBS News.

Tarryn Mento's report was a joint collaboration of KPBS and inewsource.

inewsource is an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS.

BEAT

On Monday, San Diego Unified School District students began attending classes from home.

KPBS Education Reporter Joe Hong explains what distance learning will look like for California's second largest school district.
__________________
SDUNIFIED 1

The District started what it's calling a soft launch for distance learning. Some teachers will start online instruction without grading assignments, while the district determines which students need internet and laptops. All schools are scheduled to move to formal grading on April 27th. It's still early, but teachers for the most part feel they've been given the flexibility to adapt to student needs in this new learning environment. Kisha Borden is the president of the teachers union.

KISHABORDEN.mp3
05:13-05:43
"We know some of our older students are caring for their younger siblings. People are sharing computers or trying to share the wifi in their homes, so everyone can't be on their computers at the same time."

The district says it will reach out to families about when and where laptops can be picked up.

Joe Hong KPBS news.

Beat
Sound designer Emily Jankowski, kpbs reporter Max rivlin-nadler and I recently checked in with border crossers.
The border has been closed to non-essential travel since last month in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
This piece, by the way, is a bit of a change of style and pace from what you’re used to in this podcast…

COVID 19 BORDER PACKAGE
So, it happened.
Sound Beat
In an effort to control the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
The U.S.-Mexico border is now closed to a lot of people.
Headline news clip
https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2020/mar/20/us-mexico-border-closed-coronavirus-outbreak-video
It’s important to understand that the border isn’t, like, totally cemented shut right now.
Mostly, the closure is meant to cut down on people crossing for shopping, visiting family or other purely recreational reasons.
It’s the same thing that already happened with the US-Canada border.
But a lot of border crossers here..
especially folks with jobs that aren’t deemed essential…
their cross-border commutes are officially on hold.
The drop in border traffic was huge and immediate --
It's surreal.
There are pics all over the twitter and Facebook.
An almost completely empty line at the San Ysidro Port of Entry.
No cars, no border vendors. Just empty lanes.
There’s even a picture floating around the internet of bored border vendors playing a soccer game in the empty lanes.
Here’s a United States Customs and Border Protection spokesman with the official numbers.
Clips from borderpatrolcall
So this would include them drill, validated. It just includes every port that we have from Andrati. Calexico Eastern was, uh, the God did otitis and a Seadrill. So we have seen across our ports of entry from vehicle traffic and pedestrian traffic, we have seen about a 70% decrease, uh, on average at all. Our ports of entry. Uh, the individuals traveling northbound into, uh, into our city.
So, the deluge of crossers is now a trickle.
Cross-border trade is still happening.

And if you live in Tijuana but work in San Diego... and your job is necessary right now...like if you work at a hospital or grocery store or one of the other 16 jobs officially deemed essential...you can still cross, too.
And of course, if you’re a U.S. citizen still in Mexico at the moment, you will be allowed to cross back to the U.S…. Eventually. You might have to answer some questions and get a health screening...
But all the normal day-to-day back-and-forth at the border. The tourism. The shopping. The family visits...
That’s the stuff that’s stopped as of last month.
Music Out?
borderclosureinterviews crutch placemaking tape
You can take a few steps over. Okay, good. All right.
At the San Ysidro Port of Entry the day before the border closed to non-essential traffic.
KPBS reporter max rivlin-nadler captured some of the slice-of-border-life stuff that’s been canceled.
borderclosureinterviews Needs his car back
My car is getting repaired over it. That's why I was over there.
That’s Mario Oropeza...he lives in San Ysidro, right near the border.
borderclosureinterviews Needs his car back
If I don't get my car back before they closed the border, then I don't have a car. Yeah. So you often go across the border? Not really. I was in an accident like last week. Pretty bad timing. It's very expensive to fix it here. Over there. It's like third of the price, you know? But I need my car back.
So, Mario dropped his car off at a shop in Tijuana.
And when he walked back through the border, he said there was a station where border agents were taking people’s temperatures.
He didn’t have a fever, so they let him back in..
But they did warn him they were about to close the border.
borderclosureinterviews Telling Peeps Not To Come Back
When I came back this way, they were telling everybody, Hey, we're going to close the border, so I'll make sure you don't come back anymore. So on the crossing back into the U S they said, Hey, we're closing it. Well, that's what they're telling everybody. They're kind of trying to get you ready, you know? So just in case you say, Hey, if you, unless you have any essential business in Mexico, don't come over here just for anything, you know, over there it's really dead, but everything's still open. I guess it's better to stay here, you know? So you don't think you'll be able to get your car? I dunno, man. I hope I could get my car.
And then there’s Robert Booker…
He’s a preacher who lives in the SAn Diego border community of Otay Mesa...where he was born and raised….
Preacher Robert has a tailor and a dentist in Tijuana, so he crosses at least a few times a year.

On the Friday before the new border rules went into effect, he had some newly tailored clothes in Tijuana to pick up.

borderclosureinterviews getting clothes
Well, I was planning on getting them today anyway, and when I heard the announcement from president Trump that the border may be shutting down today or tonight, this evening. I wanted to make sure I got my clothes. laughs.
Sound Beat
So, getting clothes and cars...those aren’t major emergencies, right?
That stuff’s inconvenient, but not crucial.
See...the people most impacted by the border closure right now are the ones you won’t find crossing an official port of entry. It’s those caught up in the immigration system...Which is pretty much frozen.

Asylum seekers are mostly out of luck.

And the migrant community currently stuck in Tijuana…
many who are living in camps and shelters...plus people currently detained or recently deported from the US….
These are the really vulnerable populations. Those are the people who are definitely in more danger of being infected and impacted by the slow down at the border...Human rights groups have been protesting and calling on politicians to do more to protect these groups.
We won’t know the full impact of this policy on this community until later…
Sound Beat?
And for the rest of us...
People are losing jobs...families who live on both sides of the border aren’t able to see each other in person, maybe for a long time…
There are all kinds of losses, big and small, happening as I speak.

Not long ago, I chatted with a pregnant U.S. citizen who lives in Tijuana and is super nervous about her upcoming birth, which is scheduled to take place in a hospital in San Diego. She didn’t want me to use her name because on paper she lives in San Diego.
This pregnant young lady doesn’t have official status in Mexico..
So she’s wondering if, after she gives birth in San Diego, she’ll be allowed to cross back to go home and be with her husband in Tijuana...
She also has no one to drive her on her cross-border commute to have a baby….her current plan is to drive herself, which, if like me you’ve birthed some babies, you know probably isn’t a plan that will pan out...
...I also recently talked to the head of a nonprofit that helps teach kids in orphanages in Tijuana. He reminded me of how dependent the kids are on donations from people in San Diego…
He says orphanages and the kids in them are tough and resilient, but he’s still worried about how they’ll get by without those San Diego supplies.
Sound Beat
Like I said, these are scary and uncertain times, right?
I used to live in Tijuana and I never bothered to get official status.
So...I’d be freaking out right now if something like this had happened.
But for the two cross-border commuters I talked to... two U.S. citizens who live in Tijuana but work in San Diego...
The current mantra seems to be this:
Stay calm and work on.
Sound Beat.
John Brady moved to Playas de Tijuana about a year and a half ago.

johnbradyinterview moved to tj
When did I move here. Let’s see... December of 2018.

By night, John’s really a talented punk musician and photographer…

But by day, he does the type of construction work that’s been deemed essential during the lockdown.

Think: Emergency flood water damage cleanup situations and other critical maintenance jobs….that sort of thing.

So... John is actually one of the workers who gets to keep crossing the border during the partial closure.

In my book, the guy’s a damn hero.

Because while I’m here in my house, basically too afraid to send my mom this care package that’s been sitting in front of me for the past few weeks...because, that would involve me going to the public post office which is surely crawling with coronavirus…

John is still crawling under people’s homes in City Heights….clearing out raw sewage because it’s a health hazard and he’s got a job to do…

But rather than feel like a hero, John feels sorta the opposite.

johnbradyinterview Sense of Guilt
So it's, um, I mean, I, I, I feel actually, you know, kind of a sense of guilt right now that I am able to continue. I have been able to continue working this week while nearly everybody I know is not, and you know, some of, and many of them may not have a job to go back to in a month or whenever.
johnbradyinterview friends losing jobs
I have a few friends who were, look at the outlets on the border. I, they are already, you know, they're, they're not working. Um, and you know, if, uh, this, you know, limitation on border traffic continues, are all the outlets going to close and are all my friends going to lose their jobs? Um, you know, not only, obviously those who work in service here. Um, but also, and then, you know, those who cross the border and work there. So
So John works on. And he feels privileged to be able to do so.

Beat

Since John moved to Tijuana, he has been sharing daily photos of the city on his Facebook feed.

It was his way of sharing and promoting the kind of cross-border life he leads and finds so wonderful.

But on March 24, John shared the last of his daily photos of TJ. On Facebook, he wrote, quote, “As everything shuts down in Tijuana - the places I like to hang out, socialize with friends old and new, see live music and take photos of the bands, drink, eat, over caffeinate...some of them already shuttered permanently - I’m finding little to be inspired by. There are only so many sunset photos I can share, and the inside of my apartment really isn’t much to look at.”

Tijuana is a few steps behind San Diego when it comes to closing things down and getting people to stay in doors. But in the last few days, the city has caught up and is mostly now in lockdown mode with the rest of us in San Diego.

Sound Beat

kinseeandjillzoom Moves her Laptop
Okay. Let me, let me move so I don't have back lighting. That's better. Thank you. Oh, wow. And now I have like a total legit scholarly background of all my books in the background. I love it. So what has to Juana and Baja Mexico, what has been the response so far of two COBIT. 19 is it anywhere near. The state of California, which of course is now in a lockdown mode. Well, it's been very interesting.

Jill Hoslin is a teacher at San Diego State University who’s lived in Tijuana for nearly a decade.

She’s also an artist and activist who mostly covers and cares about border-related topics.

Talking to Jill is like drinking a glass of white wine.

She just, soooo chill.

A lot of border people I know...they are super nervous that they’re never gonna be able to see their family members who live on the other side of the border ever again...

There’s this worry that President Donald Trump will just keep the border mostly closed as long as he possibly can. Because. Well, it’s what he’s basically wanted from the start.

But Jill. She’s not worried.

She’s still working...teaching her SDSU students through online classes.

And even though she has two sons in the U.S….

She’s confident they’ll see each other again.

And in the meantime, technology is her friend.
kinseeandjillzoom Super Chill Vibe
So, you know, we're always in touch. We're in touch on Facebook, we're in touch on messenger, we talk on the phone. And so, you know, it's not great to not be able to see each other, but I don't really, I'm, I'm just, I dunno, I guess I'm not really panicking about this. Yeah. All right. How are you maintaining your chillness. I don't know. I guess I'm used to living, I mean, I've lived in Tijuana, you know, for, since 2011 and I don't know, I, I actually feel more comfortable and I feel safer being in Tijuana at home. Then the idea of somehow being trapped in the United States. That's what made me more anxious. Every time I would, I would feel like, Oh my God, I have to get back home. Because if I get trapped in the United States, that for me would be a huge crisis. Um, because I mean, I don't have any place to live….
Jill says from her experience, it’s easier to access and afford healthcare in Tijuana than it is in San Diego.
So even though she’s close to the age group that’s most in danger... and she’s doubly at risk because of lung issues in the past….
Jill thinks she’s better off in TJ than she is here in SD.
Beat
Wanna know what Jill will miss the most during this border squeeze?
Sound Beat.
Yogurt.
kinseeandjillzoom Miss Me Some Yog
I mean, I like, I like unsweetened non-fat Greek yogurt because it's one of my, like, main sources of protein in the morning for breakfast. And here in Tijuana, a lot of the, a lot of the yogurt is, you know, it's either sweetened with sugar or it's Sweetened with, um, you know, non sugar sweeteners and it's just not great. And so, you know, I mean, it's not gonna kill me. It's, I'd be, you know, it's, it's a very, um, it's a very privileged position. First world problems. Exactly. Exactly. Yeah.
It’s interesting, because in some ways, our own homes have become like their own little nation states...we’ve all got these invisible lines drawn around us right now….i don’t know, it’s just got me wondering if or how this experience might change our relationship to the us-mexico border...i guess we’ll have to wait and see
Ok, that’s all I’ve got for today. Thanks for listening. If you have a story about how the border closure is impacting your life right now, please let me know. Email me at podcasts at kpbs dot org….that’s podcasts with an s at kpbs dor org.

#####END######

Monday, April 6

Title: Pop-Up Federal Field Hospital Planned for Escondido

Description: With cases of coronavirus expected to surge here in the coming weeks, officials Sunday announced plans to build a 250-bed federal hospital at Palomar Medical Center in Escondido. Plus: lots of locals are stepping up to help by fostering dogs on a temporary basis and more local news you need.

A 250-bed federal field hospital is planned for Palomar Medical Center.
On Sunday, San Diego County health officials said the "hospital within a hospital" will be installed on the 10th and 11th floors of the Escondido facility.
County supervisor Nathan Fletcher said it will be a fully functioning hospital and will add to the capacity of beds needed in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
Fletcher clip
….the 250 unit will be arriving hopefully within the next two weeks…..this will be a regional tool. (cut it down to the transcribed text show h ere)
This is one of a number of pop-up hospitals the federal government is giving to California. The feds supply all of the beds, medication and personal protective equipment
Beat

Last week, the county ordered all employees at essential businesses such as grocery stores, restaurants and pharmacies, to wear cloth facial masks that cover their nose and mouth.
County Supervisor Greg Cox says if people see workers not wearing masks, they can report the businesses at 211sandiego dot org.
SUNCOVID 1A
Our law enforcement will work first to educate these businesses when a complaint is received, but if they become repeat offenders, they will be cited. Again let me reiterate the sheriff's message: The warnings are over.
Over the weekend the Sheriff's Department cited 25 people for violating the state's prohibition on public gatherings. Those citations come with a $1,000 fine, up to six months in jail or both.
Beat
In an effort to get more medical supplies into the hands of hospital workers statewide amid the pandemic…
Gov. Gavin Newsom has launched a website for people to donate and sell the supplies.
The website, covid19supplies.ca.gov, will allow residents and organizations to donate, sell or trade critical items, such as ventilators, N95 masks and testing materials.
And another web resource for you…

Supervisor Greg Cox announced a new online effort called livewell@home that asks San Diegans to join 30-day fitness challenges, to start or join virtual book clubs or
play games and otherwise virtually connect with friends and neighbors. Get the details at livewellsd dot org.

And for the latest coronavirus numbers: County officials on Sunday reported 117 new COVID-19 cases and one additional death.

Beat

I’m Kinsee Morlan and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters.

It’s Monday, April 6.

Stay with me for more of the local news you need.

Midroll 1

Like most other things right now, local animal shelters are closed to visitors.

KPBS reporter Claire Trageser says this means shelter dogs aren't getting much attention right now, but many locals are stepping up to help by fostering dogs on a temporary basis.

_____________
COVIDDOGS

[Notes:00:00:03] This is Petunia. She's my dog. Can you say hi, Petunia?

Just like most of us, Melanie Murnane is spending a lot of time at home these days. But she has some extra company.

SOT con't
"And then my foster dog, Charlie is down below here. Charlie, can you say hi? He's looking for a home."

But wait, there's one more…

SOT
[Notes:00:10:28] "Yeah you can come out. Come on baby"

Her second foster dog--third dog total--Baby Girl hops out of her crate and goes straight for Murnane's face.

SOT
[Notes:00:11:01] "You're giving me kisses aren't you."

Murnane has long worked with a dog rescue organization that takes dogs from local shelters and puts them temporarily in foster homes.

SOT
[Notes:00:04:25] "And then promote them on social media, either find a home for them, find a long term foster or or if nothing is found, they go back to the shelter but with all sorts of notes on how great they are in a home and whether they can live with a cat or a dog or children."

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, she's had a lot of company--lots of people are wanting to foster dogs. The San Diego Humane Society recently asked for foster volunteers and got more than 400 applications in the first 24 hours.
About half the animals in local shelters are now in foster homes. On March 11, before the stay at home orders, 156 of the San Diego Humane Society animals were in foster homes. Now there are 342.

[Notes:00:01:57] "There was a dog that I had interacted with briefly when I was volunteering at the shelter and he was available."

Mary McAndrew is one of those new foster volunteers.

SOT con't
"And so he was just a perfect match for me to take home."

She volunteers at an animal shelter but hadn't brought a foster dog home before. She says the new reality brought on by the coronavirus made it the right time to start.

SOT
[Notes:00:08:11] "We're home anyway. Especially for seniors like me, they can't see the grandkids. Can't go to yoga classes. There's so many things that we can't do. But just spending time with the dogs is just really, it's fun and stimulating."

So McAndrew and her husband fostered a German Shepard mix named Maverick.

SOT
[Notes:00:04:23] "We've been out walking every day. We've explored parts of our neighborhood that we had never seen before. We've been greeting our neighbors that we've never met before or out on the porch and we can chat with them with distance. We're meeting other people's pets. It's just been it's gotten us not to think about what we can't do, but what we can do."

Then, Maverick was adopted. McAndrew says she and her husband are already looking for another foster dog to bring home.

Even though you can't visit their shelters, you can adopt through rescue organizations or the San Diego Humane Society. Spokeswoman Nina Thompson says their shelters are doing virtual adoptions.

SOT
[Notes:00:02:09] "You would have a really in-depth consultation about the pet that you're interested in before you ever even come down."

She says although people can't browse animals at the shelters, adoptions haven't lagged significantly.

[Notes:00:02:55] "We've had more animals going out than we've had coming in."

SOT
[Notes:00:11:01] "We'll find you a home, won't we. Yes, you're a good girl."

Back at Melanie Murnane's house, she's working to get foster dogs Charlie Boy and Baby Girl ready for forever homes.

[Notes:00:09:22] "She's eighty five pounds overweight by at least 20 pounds. So we're taking her for a short walk each day working on her weight loss."

She says there are other dogs available for adoption too--a Mastiff named Big Mac and an older Boxer named Deniro.
BEAT

Claire Trageser, KPBS News

While you can adopt dogs from the humane society, shelters run by San Diego County's Department of Animal Services have suspended adoptions and don't need any more foster volunteers.

A spokesman for the county didn't return requests for comment about why.

BEAT

Advocates for people living in nursing homes say the California Department of Public Health's decision to stop sending inspectors into those facilities amid the coronavirus pandemic is a mistake..

A mistake that could have deadly consequences.

KPBS Reporter Amita Sharma explains.
______________________________________________
INSPECTORS
______________________________________________
California public health officials say all routine state and federal surveys of nursing homes have been temporarily halted in response to the pandemic. They say they're still investigating incidents at the state's 1,500 nursing homes through "virtual, audio, or electronic methods."
But advocates for residents at nursing homes says state surveyors need to be onsite now more than ever. Nursing homes are under lockdown to stop the spread of COVID-19. Family and friends can no longer visit residents. Michael Connors of California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform says that means residents have no one to turn to if they're being neglected or worse...abused.
8:50 So it's incumbent at a time like this, in the midst of a pandemic for our inspectors to be the public face in those facilities and to make sure that residents are safe.
A federal survey of nursing homes released last week found that 36 percent of the facilities inspected didn't follow proper hand washing rules.

Amita Sharma, KPBS News.

Beat

Nurses at the San Diego VA say they are getting mixed messages from supervisors on how to respond to the Coronavirus.

KPBS Military and Veterans Reporter Steve Walsh says VA leaders admit there have been inconsistencies.
--------------------------------------------------------------
VANURSE
Around the country nurses have been protesting about the lack of staff and a shortage of supplies. This week nurses who work for the Veterans Health Administration are protesting in Brooklyn.
In San Diego, Brian Hebert works as a primary care nurse at the VAs Oceanside Clinic. A representative of the California Nurses Association/ National Nurses United. Hebert says the VA nurses in San Diego have some of the same concerns.
Just prior to the governor asking everyone to cover their faces in public, a VA supervisor told two nurses to remove face masks they brought from home. I talked to Hebert via skype.
00;12;39;02
"And they are specifically telling you that you can't wear a mask, unless you're in a certain situation? …….Depending on where you are working, it's kind of a different message given by different managers. Our manager is lenient and says you can wear it if you have access. Meanwhile it seems like some of the managers at the main hospital are following a different protocol."
Hebert says nurses are worried about a lack of consistency. He describes how the VA has stations setup outside most locations to check patients for the virus -- Following CDC guidelines– But that's not how it works at his clinic in Oceanside:
00;04;20;17
"how well are they doing when it comes to keeping COVID-19 patients separate from the rest of the hospital? They are doing checks outside of the building…… They have stations setup for checking patients and isolating them at that point, but that's not being instituted at all of the locations currently. Currently at Oceanside they're checking inside the building, not outside where it would be better for all included. The staff and the patients. Because if someone through the questions is found positive, they're moved to a secondary place and they should already be outside and they're not. So they're not checking outside the building, they're checking inside? That's correct."
A recent report from the VA Inspector General also criticized two other clinics at the San Diego VA for not properly screening patients before they actually entered the clinic. Director of San Diego VA Medical system, Dr. Robert Smith acknowledges there have been issues with screening.
00;09;34;08
"We might screen outside the door, but If weather conditions don't permit, we might screen right inside the door and again, put people into secondary screening if they have any symptoms or fever or anything else."
Smith says he has reemphasized to screen everyone BEFORE they can mix with the rest of the staff or patients. As far as whether staff was told to take off their own protective masks, which they brought from home?
00;14;37;11
"I can't speak to what an individual supervisor might have said but that was not policy. We do need to make clear that personally owned gear, whether it's a mask or a bandana is not a substitute for formal PPE."

On the question of hospital grade personal protective equipment or PPE, Smith says officials at the San Diego VA do not want staff to REUSE hospital grade masks -- ANOTHER Concern raised by nurses on staff. Smith says staff has been told to keep the masks that have been fitted for them.

00;16;44;05
"Under those circumstances that's not a reuse. I know some of the staff were confused that we were suggesting they could reuse that mask when all we were saying is keep the mask and use it as PPE in the first appropriate setting, when it's appropriate to use PPE, not reuse masks after that."
Asked whether he is able to get out a consistent message as the situation rapidly evolves:

00;18;27;17
"I think messaging is the single hardest thing to get right for healthcare organizations right now. We have staff that is very concerned. I think the message they get nationally is very concerning. And trying to stay ahead of that has been challenging."

At the moment, the VA is well under capacity. The San Diego VA has had 19 confirmed cases of COVID-19 among patients. Only one is hospitalized at the moment, though the system is still expecting a surge.

BEAT

Steve Walsh KPBS News.

Even during this time of social distancing, there are opportunities to help your community…

You can give blood or volunteer at the local food bank.

The CEO of the San Diego Food Bank, James Floros, and Public Relations Manager of the San Diego Blood Bank, Claudine Van Gonka spoke to Midday Edition Host Maureen Cavanaugh.

They talked about how San Diegans can step up and safely volunteer amid the Coronavirus outbreak.

MIDDAY_GIVING

The KPBS news team is monitoring the Corona virus outbreak in the San Diego area. You'll find all the latest updates, including guidelines from local health officials on our live blog at K pbs.org/coronavirus. There is no doubt that the last weeks have been filled with anxiety and upheaval. But one way some people have found to cope is by helping out, whether that's writing a note to people socially isolated in a nursing home, as we heard in our report from st Paul, senior services.

Or checking on a neighbor and there are other opportunities to give back to the community even during this time of social distance and stay at home orders. For instance, at yesterday's County news conference, Rady and the rock church announced a partnership to collect personal protective equipment.

Here's pastor miles McPherson from the rock church. We've never been here before and the only way we're going to get through it as if we stick together. And joining me now with more on community giving are Mark steward, CEO of San Diego foundation. Mark, welcome to the program. Thank you Marine. Pleasure to be with you.

James fluorosis here. He CEO of the San Diego food bank. James, welcome. Good afternoon. And we're also joined by Claudine van Ganga. She's public relations manager with the San Diego blood bank. Claudine, welcome to the show. Thank you so much, and we're asking our listeners, how have you been helping out during this crisis, or what do you think we should be doing to help each other?

Give us a call. The number is +1 888-895-5727 Mark, let me start with you. The San Diego foundation has put together the coven 19 community response fund. Once people donate, where is that money going? Sure. Well, Maureen, we have already allocated and distributed 1.1 $5 million in the community, and another million dollars will be out, uh, very, very soon.

And a third traunch of $1 million will be out next week. We recognize that we've raised a great sum of money, but that. Uh, this crisis is not going to be over next week or next month. And so we're trying to do as much good as quickly as we can, but knowing that people are going to be hurting for months on end.

And as I say, what, when people donate to this, what is becoming a very large, uh, fund? How do you distribute that money? Where is it going. Sure. So we have five priorities. The first is food security, making sure that people are fed, and uh. That their health needs are met. So that's our top priority. We also have other emerging needs such as transportation and mobile phone bills.

Uh, we are also seeing emergent new needs that include Scholastic materials for students. Uh, we're hearing incredible stories of the digital divide, uh, where, uh, students from. Lower socioeconomic backgrounds, really have no capacity to be able to participate in their classes, which will be all going online very soon.

And that's from a K up through a 16 16th grade. So the need is great, but these are the areas on which we're going to be focusing our time and attention. And Mark, how have people responded to the call for donations. . It's been remarkable. Moraine, the first people that we turn to, of course, were fund holders at the San Diego foundation.

And of the six point $8 million we've received to date, probably 60 to 65% have come from our fund holders who have said this is the time for which they needed to act and to give. Now. So we've secured gifts from about 1600, uh, corporations, foundations, and individuals. And that number continues to grow every day.

Now, many people find themselves out of work because of this outbreak and money is tight, but there are other ways people can help like volunteering. And this is to our listeners, if you've found a way to help. Give us a call. The number is 1888955727 that's one eight eight eight, eight, nine five K PBS.

Let me turn to James.
4:31

4:31The San Diego food bank is one of the organizations in need of volunteers right now. Isn't that right? That is correct. That is a always been a major part of our supply chain, our, our workforce. And a typical year, about 29,000 volunteer visits, uh, the value of that volunteers and about one point $8 million of free labor.

So we've had to kind of adjust some things cause you know, one of the big groups that provide a lot of that volunteerism where corporations that are doing community outreach, community service projects, while they all canceled. Within the first week, uh, 50 groups, 1400 volunteers, and so we've been putting out the call for individuals and you know, knock on wood, so far, so good.

Uh, we've been doing pretty well. Fill in the shifts. What will the volunteers be doing. Well, they, uh, you know, our model is one of the, uh, more cutting edge models. So we sort and pack all the food that goes out for distribution. So rather than bringing out a big, huge VAT of a, of a fruit, we actually bagged that fruit.

You know, so it might be eight or 10 apples in a bag or oranges or what have you. So it makes the distributions go a lot quicker. So they sort food, they package the food. We have a senior program. We do 14,000 a week. We serve 14,000 seniors a month. They get a 36 pound box of food. Um, well that food, each one of those boxes have to be a pack.

So. Well, you know, my volunteers are making 13,000 boxes a month or 14,000 boxes a month just for that program alone. So it's pretty much everything we, uh, distribute. Last year was 32 million pounds of food. A volunteer will generally touch that food before it goes out. How does volunteering conform with the governor's stay at home orders?

Well. Um, we are exempt from the, uh, executive order. So all food banks, food pantries, our nonprofit partners, uh, with a, um, you know, we're feeding programs and all our volunteers are all essential personnel and they're all exempt from the, uh, from the governor's order. Uh, we are taking care all the precautions.

We're doing social spacing, hand washing, station sanitizer, gloves and all that. So we're making sure that our volunteers are protected if they do, uh, come in and volunteer. And that's at the San Diego food bank.

Let me turn now to Claudine. One of the most well known ways of volunteering, of course, is to give blood, and now the San Diego blood bank wants you to know that they are still taking appointments from blood donors.

Claudine, how does that work during the Corona virus outbreak? Yes. So I will say, I'll start by saying the community really has come to the table and come out to donate blood. A couple of weeks ago, we were definitely in crisis. Um, but the word got out, people have been coming in. So now what we're asking is for folks to make an appointment temporarily, we are on an appointment only basis.

We're asking them to make an appointment for the next three to four weeks. Because while we do have a stable supply right now, we are going to need to continue to keep that supply stable through the pandemic and beyond. And, and much like the food bank, we are considered an essential community service.

So we will remain open. All of our donors centers and the few mobile drives that there are, uh, will remain open during this day at home order. We do have a caller on the line. Sam is calling us from San Diego. Sam, welcome to the program. Hi. Um, I'm calling from mere Mesa and I want to encourage everyone to, uh, make masks and, uh, spare your, uh, and identify mass for F, uh, for the, uh, those who actually need them.

And are you making masks to them? Yes. Our family has made more than 500 masks and we have been passing out to nurses and elderly and we have way more requests than we can do. Well, thank you so much for the call. And our number is one eight eight eight eight, nine five K PBS. But we're coming close to the top of the hour.

Let me continue my conversation with, uh, Claudine and, uh, you need volunteers though, not to give blood, but to help at the blood bank. What would they be doing. We do. We need volunteers almost as much as we need blood donors at this point. So volunteers will be doing an array of different things. If they are joining us at our donor centers, which we have six of throughout San Diego County, they potentially could be helping take temperatures at the door because you are currently not allowed in the door without being.

Having your temperature taken and being asked a few questions, and that's if they're comfortable doing that. Otherwise, we have opportunities within the donor center, um, to wipe down the tables, uh, where folks get their juices and their snacks after their donation. We're wiping down the pens, we're wiping down the folders, potentially helping to wipe down the donor beds in between and to make sure that folks are social distancing.

And remind us why a steady supply of blood is so important for our community. A community blood bank means everything to an area. Not all cities have their own community blood bank, and so it's important that we have enough on our shelves. We supply over 40 hospitals from here to Los Angeles. And people don't just need blood when they have an accident or an operation.

We have to remember there are people out there that use blood on a regular basis to stay alive. We have a couple of young ladies that we work with on a regular basis that get blood transfusions every three weeks because they have a very rare form of thalassemia. It's of anemia, it's called Fallacemia, and so we have to remember those supplies need to stay steady, not only for those who have one time need, but for those who are in need all the time.

James, what are you seeing at the food bank in terms of the number of people who need food? Well, our lines are growing. Uh, you know, we have a nonprofit center. It's where most of our nonprofits come and pick up their food. Uh, we're distributed about a hundred thousand pounds a day. Just to our nonprofit partners.

And so I go down, I talked to the different agencies, I'm hearing stories. They were between 50% longer lines to double the size. So we're in the process of just trying to get our arms around how many pounds of food we've distributed and how many more people we've served just since, uh, March 12th. Uh, but we know that the lines are longer.

Uh, we're doing a few mass distributions, which is something that we don't normally do. We're trying to shorten those lines. Uh, so we're adjusting on the fly, but, um, you know, we typically, we're feeding about 350,000 people a month. Uh, we think that number could be doubled as of this month
11:01

. And I would want to thank my guests.

I have been speaking with Mark Stewart, he's CEO of San Diego foundation, James fluoros, CEO of the San Diego food bank, and Claudine van Goenka. She is public relations manager with the San Diego blood bank. And I know that you all really need donations. You need people to give you a call. Uh, could you just really quickly tell us one by one.

Well how they can contact you. Mark. Oh, any person can go onto our website, www S D foundation slash covet 19 and make a contribution by check credit card donor advise fund mutual funds. They can make a gift very easily and we will get those dollars out as quickly as we can. And the San Diego foundation is not taking any fees on any gifts.

So 100% of what you give. We'll go to help our community in need. Thank you. James. Fluoro, CEO of San Diego food bank. How do they contact you? So San Diego food bank.org back slash get help. We're updating our website, the weekly, the list of the number of distributions. Uh, we're doing and it's about a hundred a week.

So San Diego food bank.org/get help. And if you want to make a financial gift, San Diego food bank.org there's also a virtual food driver. People can actually buy food on our behalf. And quickly San Diego bloodbank how would, how would they contact you? Also through our website in order to make an appointment to donate blood, just sign up to volunteer or to make a financial donation.

You can go to San Diego blood bank.org and we too have a coven 19 informational button that you can check there that's updated regularly and you've been listening to KPBS F M San Diego. Thank you for listening.

Now on KPBS is podcast only here. Garcia is undocumented, but after seeing her brother detained by ice, it inspired her to change her life. I image I've seen my brother behind the glass wall and the feeling of hopelessness and outrage. I talked to about how she grew to become one of the most high profile immigrant advocates working on the border today.

Get only here on Apple podcasts or wherever you listen.

For more information about helping or volunteering, go to San Diego food bank dot org or San Diego blood bank dot org.

In that full KPBS Midday interview, maureen also talked to the CEO of the San Diego Foundation, which has set up a special covid-19 to help locals in need. To hear the full interview look for the kpbs midday edition podcast wherever you get your podcats...or to learn more about donating to the San Diego Foundation fund, go to sd foundation dot org.

And if you have any questions about the coronavirus that you can’t seem to find answers to, please reach out to kpbs. Go to kpbs dot org slash coronavirusquestions and let us know what you want to know.

Thanks for listening. :)

####end#######

Friday, April 3

Title: SD Health Officials: Wear Face Coverings

Description: San Diego County officials Thursday announced some essential employees must wear face coverings to prevent the spread of coronavirus. That directive comes as deaths from the illness increased by one to 16 and total positive cases grew to 966. Plus: which students could fall through the cracks as school districts move to distance learning and more local news you need.

Facemask clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POvs4vlQJOM
Hi, i’m tktkt and i’m going to show you how to make a face mask…

I don’t know about you, but I keep toggling back and forth between wearing a mask when I go to the grocery store, or not wearing a mask.
My mother-in-law is a creative pinterest-type genius, so she made us a mask, so I do have one to wear...
But frankly, it can feel a little end-of-the-wordly to wear a mask around.
But on Thursday, San Diego Co unty officials ended my to wear or not to wear struggle.
County health officials now say some essential employees must wear face coverings to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
They say the coverings should not be masks used by healthcare workers,
Instead, they suggested using bandanas or scarves. The requirement applies to employees at pharmacies, supermarkets, convenience stores and gas stations.
Further orders say anyone who leaves their home for any essential purpose should wear a facial covering -- a bandana, scarf, homemade mask, etc. -- while maintaining social distancing.

Sheriff Bill Gore, by the way, says his department will more aggressively enforce all of the county's public health orders and violators will face fines.
Facemask clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POvs4vlQJOM
Some other clip from this video maybe?
Beat
In other local headlines…

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulcon is calling on local businesses to pivot to making critical supplies to help during this pandemic.

Mayorpresserclip_pivots
….there are certain items across the world...the list goes on and on.

In a press conference Thursday, he also called on all San Diegans to help keep grocery store workers safe.

He said folks should not be shopping if they feel sick..

He recommended going shopping alone or in smaller groups

And said to avoid using cash.

-And in Carlsbad….After efforts to keep people from gathering at the beach proved insufficient, city leaders announced they will prohibit parking along nearly six miles of state-owned coastline starting Friday.

Some good news for entrepreneurs….California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Thursday that the state would be issuing a 12-month sales tax reprieve for small businesses.

And the latest Covid Count: As of Thursday afternoon, the county had logged 966 COVID-19 cases. The region’s death toll is now 16.

And an elderly adult with underlying health conditions is the first person to die in Imperial County from complications of COVID-19. Plus: the United States Postal service says a Rancho Bernardo postal service worker tested positive for the coronavirus.

Sound bump

I’m Kinsee Morlan and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters.

It’s Friday, April 3.

Stick with me for more of the local news you need.

Midroll 1

Lindsay Hartmann is among the hundreds of people in San Diego County who've tested positive for COVID-19.

She's been isolated at home in Linda Vista with her Marine husband, her mother and her two toddlers.

All of the adults have experienced symptoms.

inewsource reporter Mary Plummer brings us this audio postcard.

HARTMAN ...is where I'm at right now. (+music fades)

An update to this story, Hartmann has since been laid off.

On a positive note, she and her mom are out of isolation.

Her husband remains ill.

For more on this story, go to inewsource dot org. inewsource is an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS

Beat

Engineers and doctors across the country are racing to build and fix ventilators as the number of people with COVID-19 climbs.

KPBS Science and Technology reporter Shalina Chatlani spoke to UC San Diego faculty leading an effort locally.

1:16 ...SOQ.
-----------------
AMBI: Lung simulation… At a simulation lab on the UC San Diego campus a robotic lung wheezes as it pushes air in and out… Engineer James Friend says these devices are used to test ventilator prototypes.

FRIEND: roughly 10,000 ventilators are needed in california, roughly 4,500 have been found, 5,500 is needed. SO there's a comprehensive effort from identification of ventillators sitting in warehouses… old ventilators dragged out of retirement

Friend and UCSD physician Lonnie Peterson are testing out devices that could increase ventilator availability. One is a manual ventilator -- which a human would normally have to pump by hand-- that these engineers turned automatic.

Another is a ventilator with a splitter, so two patients can share a machine. Peterson says completing this second project is particularly challenging, because ventilators typically self- adjust based on one patient's condition.

00:09:10:24
PETERSON: They constantly adjust the amount of air and the pressure it's delivered at to the patients specific needs… That makes it good for the patient but complicates matters when trying to give it to two patients.

These scientists say they are pushing prototypes through proper clearance channels and hope they can make a difference. Shalina Chatlani KPBS news.

SOUND BEAT

It's now all but certain that the coronavirus pandemic will force schools to remain closed for the rest of the year..

and students will be taught online.

But for some vulnerable student groups, learning from home isn't so simple.

KPBS Education Reporter Joe Hong spoke to experts about which students could fall through the cracks.

DISTANCE LEARNING PACKAGE

As districts push ahead with their plans for distance learning, experts are concerned about who might fall behind without extra support. Elisha Smith Arrillaga directs Ed Trust-West, a nonprofit advocating for equity in education. She said there's been a lack of consistency statewide.

"And that lack of consistency we know often means the students of color, low income students, and english learners are the ones that are left with resources that are not comparable to other students."

By law, public school students regardless of their circumstances are entitled to an education that is equal to their peers, even if that requires additional services. Smith and other experts say that this was a struggle even in the best of times. Joe Hong KPBS News.
___________________________________

SOUND BUMP

After complaints from doctors and advocates for the elderly,

the California Department of Public Health walked back a blanket order from earlier this week that required nursing homes to take in coronavirus patients.

KPBS Reporter Amita Sharma has more.
______________________________________________
SENIORCARE 1(AS) SOQ :45
A new state order now says nursing homes can be expected to accept residents recovering from COVID-19. But that can only happen if the local health department has been consulted, if the nursing home has adequate personal protective equipment, and if it has the ability to follow federal infection prevention and control rules. Dr. Karl Steinberg is a nursing home and hospice medical director in North County.

"My colleagues and I are thrilled to see where the California Department of Public health decided last night to back off on that blanket mandate that said we had to take covid positive patients no matter what. I think it's really a step in the right direction."

County officials have thus far reported more than 30 cases of COVID-19 in senior care facilities, which include nursing homes. Amita Sharma, KPBS News.

BEAT

A record 6 million Americans have filed for unemployment as cases of coronavirus continue to rise across the country.

In San Diego at least 20,000 workers -- mainly in the hospitality and food industry-- have been laid off.

31-year-old Deon Winters of San Diego is one of those impacted.

He was just hired as a cook at Gossip Grill in Hillcrest a couple months ago before becoming jobless.

He applied for unemployment, but didn't work long enough to qualify for it.

JOBLESS 2A
I just hope that all of us will be able to go back to work real real soon that everything will be back to somewhat normal and if not unemployment whatever they have they need to do it sooner, its going to be a lot of trouble out here and that's what I'm afraid of (:25)

Winters lives paycheck to paycheck and has been getting help from industry friends and family members.

EMO BEAT

It’s Friday, so even though none of us are going anywhere, I thought it’d be a good time to get Julia Dixon Evans on the show.

Julia’s job, in part is to keep us cultured, even through Covid-19.

Julia is the new arts calendar editor here at kpbs…

She’s also a novelist and a witty music nerd….

And before the pandemic was a thing, she was the go-to resource for finding out what’s happening in town...what arts and culture events were going on...what bands are good...that sort of thing…

But like a lot of us, she’s done the pandemic pivot and now she’s doing roundups of virtual arts and culture experiences.

Julia recently picked five new songs from artists who were scheduled to roll through San Diego, including one track from a local band.

And, sorry, but I caused a mic fail so the audio of the interview isn’t great.

Anyway, first on Julia’s playlist, is 'Need Your Love' by Tennis.

Julia interview

Julia also writes a weekly newsletter. Get yourself subscribed by going to kpbs dot org slash alerts and clicking on the kpbs arts newsletter.

OK, and I wanted to leave you with one more piece of music.

Clip mr david

My youngest son’s preschool teacher, Mr. David, wrote a little covid-19 ditty and played it in a Facebook video for his friends and followers. I asked him if I could share it with you and he said yes, so here it is...a coronoavirus cancion by David Pena.

Mr David Song

end#####end

Thursday, April 2

Title: Mayor Directs All Vacant City Property To Help Expected COVID-19 Surge

Description: Mayor Faulconer on Wednesday announced he is directing all vacant city property to be used to support an expected surge in COVID-19 patients. Plus: San Diegans are generally behaving themselves and following orders to stay at home through the outbreak and more local news you need.

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer announced Wednesday that all available city properties can be used by health officials if or when they need the extra space to help deal with the expected surge of covid-19 cases.

Mayorpresser clip
I’m doing this in expectation….that we can offer.

- The San Diego Convention Center is already being put to use.

The city property is now a temporary homeless shelter.

On Wednesday morning, officials started moving residents from existing shelters into the convention center space.

Eventually the city plans on moving in people who are sleeping on the streets.

All of this is an effort to stop a potential explosion of coronavirus cases among the vulnerable population.

CONVHOMELESS 2A 0:15
"San Diego now has access to a huge facility that can shelter many, many more people more efficiently than ever before. This is an opportunity to tackle the coronavirus and the homeless crisis at the same time."

The county health department says so far three homeless people have tested positive for COVID-19.

Music bump

In other local headlines…

-Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday said that schools likely will not reopen this school year due to the outbreak.

San Diego Unified and other school districts are getting ready to launch a more organized and official distance learning effort later this month.

And for high school seniors out there, some relief...the University of California system announced Wednesday that it will not require students applying for admission for the 2021-22 school year to submit SAT scores.

It’s also relaxing other admission requirements amid the pandemic.

Sound bump

And the latest covid count…

San Diego County officials Wednesday said five additional people died from coronavirus while another 115 tested positive.

That brings the county’s total to 849 cases with 15 deaths.

Officials are urging residents to continue staying at home and practicing social distancing... especially during the next month.

WEDCOVID 2A (:12) "And for these San Diegans we plead with you and we ask you that the month of April is the time in which we must all come together we must all make an absolutely unequivocal commitment that we will shoulder our share of the load."

Music bump

I’m Kinsee Morlan and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters.

It’s Thursday, April 2.

Stay with me for more local news you need.

Midroll 1

As the coronavirus spreads, the C-D-C warns that some populations are at higher risk of developing a more severe case.

inewsource reporter Brad Racino spoke with people at one senior care facility to see how they're holding up.

========TOT: 3:06

RACINO: The CDC says people at high risk of developing COVID-19 related complications include: Those with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma, diabetics, people with serious heart conditions or severe obesity, and those with compromised immune systems

RACINO: Also — people 65 and up. That's because the human body's immune systems weaken with age, which makes it harder for seniors to fight off infectious disease. (:25)

WILSON: "COVID-19 has really set everybody on their ear."

RACINO: Cheryl Wilson is the CEO of St. Paul's Senior Services, a nonprofit that has operated in San Diego County for 60 years. (:09)

WILSON: "When all of this started to break about three weeks ago — prior to it really breaking in the United States — we all got together, realized what was going to happen and started putting our plans into place."

RACINO: St. Paul's medical staff began monitoring residents for symptoms of the disease, Wilson said. They also surveyed their stock of personal protective equipment, ensured visitors used hand sanitizer and began offering meal delivery ... As a result, the normally communal culture at St. Paul's has changed drastically over the past month. (:18)

SOULES: "Well, boring is the first word that springs to mind."

RACINO: Sheila Soules lives at St. Paul's Manor near Balboa Park. She says she plays bridge, reads books and takes frequent walks during the day. But she misses the outings, group discussions and church services that have been canceled. (:14)

SOULES: "But I have a lovely room on the ninth floor. I can see all the airplanes and all the ships in and out. And I'm very grateful to be here."

RACINO: Data from South Korea, Spain, China and Italy show the bulk of their coronavirus-related fatalities were among seniors. The U.S. is no different. Current CDC data show that 80% of domestic COVID-19 deaths occurred among adults 65 years and older.

RACINO: Wilson says right now, St. Paul's is looking for volunteers to place calls or send emails to their residents simply to pass the time. (:26)

WILSON: "Volunteers who could write little happy notes to people or even ... if they could email little happy things every day, little things or, you know, how are you doing?"

RACINO: Aside from seniors, the other groups mentioned earlier are also at high risk.

RACINO: Dr. Eric McDonald is the county's medical director for epidemiology and immunization services. He said at a news conference that regardless of where people in these groups live, the message is the same:

MCDONALD: "You are at risk."

MCDONALD: "You should take extra precautions and be sure that you are very aware of your essential activities."

RACINO: With KPBS' help, inewsource has created an interactive map showing where the highest concentrations of these populations are clustered in San Diego County. The map shows diabetes is prevalent throughout South County, where large groups of people suffering from COPD and asthma are also located. High numbers of seniors are in Rancho Bernardo, Oceanside and La Jolla. And heart disease is scattered throughout the county. You can use the map by going to inewsource dot org.

RACINO: For KPBS, I'm inewsource reporter Brad Racino.

=========

inewsource is an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS.

Music bump

San Diegans are generally obeying the law and following orders to stay at home due to the coronavirus outbreak.

That's according to the San Diego Police Department.

KPBS reporter Claire Trageser has an update on how police are enforcing the city's new rules.

______________
COVIDPOLICE 1 (ct) 1:11 soq

Police have not issued any citations for people violating stay-at-home orders, including people using parks and beaches that are closed.
There are also no reports of increased lawlessness: people speeding, driving through red lights, o
r otherwise driving recklessly, says San Diego Police spokesman Lt. Shawn Takeuchi. Overall, calls for service are down.
Police have responded to calls reporting non-essential businesses are open--they've told store owners they need to close and the owners have listened, he says.
Officers are working to enforce new rules while trying not to come down with the coronavirus--two officers have tested positive so far.

COVIDPOLICE 2A
"We also are supplying all of our officers who are working with an extra go kit. And in that kit, it includes extra gloves. It also includes hand sanitizer. It includes safety goggles and it includes a N-95 mask."

The police academy is also closing down for at least two weeks. That means the 185 recruits who were scheduled to graduate this May and August will be delayed.
Claire Trageser, KPBS News

Music bump

The Navy is responding to an outbreak of coronavirus cases on the USS Theordore Roosevelt, a day after a desperate letter from the captain became public.

KPBS Military Reporter Steve Walsh explains.
----------------------------------------------------------
ROOSEVELT 1 :59 SOQ
The Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly says 1,000 sailors have been removed and a total of 2,700 sailors will be placed on shore in Guam while the San Diego-based carrier is being disinfected. He says the entire carrier can't be evacuated.

ROOSEVELT 2A
"This ship has weapons on it. It has munitions on it. It requires a certain number of people on it to maintain the safety and security of the ship."

Roughly a quarter of the 4,800 crew members have been tested so far. 93 sailors have tested positive. After the ship left San Diego in January, it made port in Vietnam, which already showed signs of the virus, but the Navy hasn't found patient zero.
Roosevelt 2B
"Someone could have brought it with them when the ship deployed from San Diego. We just don't know."
The TR is so far still the only deployed Navy ship where sailors tested positive. But testing kits are still being rushed to ships around the fleet. Steve Walsh KPBS News.

Music bump

An ongoing lawsuit against the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has argued the state's prisons are overcrowded and the prisoner population needs to be reduced.

KPBS reporter Claire Trageser says the coronavirus pandemic is giving new urgency to the suit.

______________
RELEASES 1 (ct) 0:53 LIVE TAG

Lawyers for California prison inmates have filed additional motions asking that prisoners who would be released in the next year be freed immediately to prevent the spread of the virus.

On Tuesday, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation announced it's letting out 3,500 inmates. But all of them were scheduled to be released in the next 60 days.

Alison Hardy, an attorney for Prison Law Office, says just under half of the 122,000 California inmates live in dormitories that house 10 to 100 people.

RELEASES 2A
"So while the rest of us in the country are not allowed to congregate in groups larger than 10, people in the prison have no choice other than to live with scores of people. In many cases their beds are within arm's length of each other."

As of 5 p.m. Tuesday, there were 25 California prison employees who had tested positive for COVID-19 and eight inmates.

Claire Trageser, KPBS News

A hearing on the motion is scheduled for this Thursday afternoon before three federal judges.

Sound bump

So, it’s census time. The time when the government sets out to count every living person in the U.S.

Officials have vowed to complete the count by its year end deadline, despite the coronavirus pandemic.

By now, every person should have received a letter from the census Bureau with an invitation to participate.

I got mine...but I’ll admit..i have yet to do anything.

Luckily, millions of people who don’t procrastinate like me have responded already.

For more on how the count is going. KPBS midday edition host Jade Hindman talked to Jeff Enos, the deputy regional census manager in LA.

He explains why the census is important…and details how the census bureau is weathering the pandemic storm.

Midday Census segment Clip

So first I have to ask about the Corona virus pandemic. Has the census Bureau made any changes to its protocols and procedures since coven 19 yes.

So the current situation is affecting the entire country and the entire world. And first and foremost, the health and safety of our staff. And the public at large remains of the most utmost importance in everything that we do. So our leadership is, the census Bureau is carefully monitoring the situation and we're following all of the current federal, state, and local health authorities.

People are still responding and Greg number and everyone can still respond online@twentytwentycensus.gov over the phone by calling the number provided in the census and the patient. And buy paper through the mail. So as we continue to monitor the situation, we've adjusted our field operations in order to protect the health and safety of census employees and the public and ensure a complete and accurate accountable all of our communities.

So, um, we, we have had to postpone some of our census operations, but we have not put in jeopardy any of our final deadlines. Hmm. Uh, what census operations have been postponed? Is it the, the outreach, the door to door knocking? So we have a couple of, uh, major operations that have been postponed until April 15th.

Uh, one of them is what's called update leave. And what that is, is in some of them are rural areas where homes don't have personnel, they don't have mail delivery, where, where people maybe get their mail delivered to a PO box. In those kinds of areas. We generally have a census enumerator go out, update the maps, make sure we have every address included in our maps, and actually leave a questionnaire at the door.

So we were just starting that operation a few days and when the whole Corona virus pandemic hit so that that operation has been postponed. So there are a percentage of the population, it's 5% or less. Of the population that did not actually get a paper questionnaire dropped off of their door. And so once we resume on April 15th the hope is that we can, we will continue that operation and deliver the remaining questionnaires in those rural areas.

Additionally, we have our operations where, where we conduct interviews, where we collect data, the census data for people living in what we call group quarters. And these are situations like college dormitories, County jail. And other types of situations where people are living in kind of group type situations.

That operation is, has been postponed due to the pandemic. And additionally, the operation account, the population experiencing homelessness. And that was scheduled for March 30th through April 1st where we, where we interview people or count people staying at homeless shelters at a soup kitchen. Uh, receiving services with two pigeons and, and, um, mobile food vans and, and also account people, you know, living outside, living at outdoor locations, uh, that was scheduled for March 30th through April 1st it's now been delayed or postponed until the end of April, beginning of may.

Are there any concerns that the account itself can just be completely delayed. The census Bureau is confident that the count will be completed and delivered to the president's desk by the constitutionally mandated deadline of December 31st 0.1 we have had to postpone some of our start dates and we built in cushions to be able to complete those on well, well within the timeline that we need to.

Are you aware of any census worker testing positive for Coronavirus?

Yes. Unfortunately, we do have confirmed cases of employees who've been diagnosed with over 19 and they're all in quarantine. None of them have come into contact with the public, and again, they're all important to you so that this current situation impacts us all and our hearts go out to those who are affected across the country.

It's been something that's been difficult to deal with. What's the Bureau doing to protect its workers and mid the pandemic. Again, many of our operations have been postponed to protect the safety and health of our employees and of the public. Additionally, although the, the, the, the census operations are, are considered an essential activity, it's government has government work.

All employees that are eligible to telework are teleworking and working from home, and we're maximizing the use of telework and people working at home in order to keep them safe. And again, we're . We're assuring that we follow all, uh, health guidance provided at the federal, state, and local levels. In the sense census started sending out letters to every household in the country to participate in the count.

Do you have a sense of what the response has been from San Diego County residents so far? So currently San Diego County is actually higher than national average in San Diego County is currently at 41%. Self response began on March 12th that's when the first questionnaire is the first invitation to respond.

We're being received in households and it continues through August 14th so we're in the early stages and it's encouraging to see that we're already nationally, we're already over 36% and even more encouraging in San Diego County that we're at, we're at 41%. And you know, we all know that the census takes place every 10 years.

But remind us why the data is so important. What does it use for, you know, especially at a time like this when we're in a national emergency. Oh, sure. So, uh, two, two things that, that, why the census is so important. It boils down to these two things. Power and money. So talking about power, census results determine each state's representation.

In the U S house of representatives and inform legislative district Foundry the power of voting. The second part is money responses to the 2020 census shaped decisions about how hundreds of billions of dollars in federal, state and local funds are spent in all of our communities each year, including funding for local hospitals and emergency services.

So when we're talking hundreds of billions of dollars every year, and this is only done once every 10 years. Multiply that hundreds of billions by 10 and we're talking trillions of dollars over the, over the horse, over the span of 10 years are distributed based on census count. So it's a really big deal.

So when individuals in a community, when a community doesn't respond or their people choose not to respond, and those communities are potentially undercounted, they're also underfunded. They're, they're not, they may not receive the funds that they are entitled to. So in a situation like we're experiencing today where we're in a national emergency, if you've got an undercount in an area, uh, that area may not receive the federal dollars needed to address the emergency happening, correct?

That's correct. That's why it's so important that we, we, we get everyone to respond and it starts with self response and getting people to respond online over the phone. Even though the old fashioned way, filling out the census form and mailing it in where we met, we're trying to make this as simple and easy as possible for individuals.

And also say, title 13 of the U S code protects the data, protects the information that people provide. Counting everyone is crucial to getting federal dollars. What groups are at risk of not being counted in Y? So generally, uh, the poppy, the populations that are, that. Are considered harder to counter, or are historically have been under counted are generally our minorities, uh, low-income renters.

There's different variables that that are, that are reviewed and, and shown to be the population that are less likely to respond to the census. So the census Bureau has a national advertising campaign, and the. I had a lot of focus, especially on the heartbeat count population. Hmm. You know, president Donald Trump tried to get a question about citizenship in the census, but didn't succeed.

Do you expect, uh, legal immigrants and people without documents will participate in? How are you making sure they do? So we want everyone to respond to everyone living in the country as of April 1st, 2020 we want. And needs to respond to the census, and it's actually required by law to respond to the sentence.

All the data is protected under title 13 of the U S code. It's not shared with, with immigration, it's not shared with the IRS. It's not shared with any federal, state, or local agency. It's not shared with any private or public company as well. Just all the individual census records are kept completely confidential.

And what do you want to remind people of on this census day? So it's safe. The data is protected under title 13 as a U S coat held completely confidential. It's simple. It takes less than, on average, less than 10 minutes to respond to census. And it's important. Hundreds of billions of dollars of federal funding is distributed to communities across the country based on the center on sensitive data.

So respond early, respond, respond now, and. Also encourage your friends, your family, get on social media, help people to respond to the sentence. It's important that we all respond. I've been speaking with Jeff. He knows steppy regional census manager at the LA regional census center. Jeff, thank you so much for joining us.

Oh, thank you.

Music bump

Ok, fine. I’m gonna go fill out my census data right now.. To hear that full interview...subscribe to the kpbs midday edition podcast wherever you get your podcasts…

That’s all for today. Stay safe.

Wednesday, April 1

Title: Otay Detention Center Employee Tests Positive For COVID-19

Description: A person who works at the Otay Mesa Detention Center tested positive for COVID-19. Plus: Empty U C San Diego dorms may be converted into a care center to help with a looming hospital bed shortage, a new drug tunnel is found and more of the local news you need.
--------------------------------------------

A person who works at the Otay Mesa Detention Center tested positive for COVID-19.

The announcement came from CoreCivic, the private prison company that runs the detention center for Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the U.S. Marshals Service.

The detention center holds migrant detainees for ICE. But ICE has yet to comment publicly on the case.

Beat

Since the covid-19 pandemic hit our region.. Local migrant advocates have been calling for the release of detainees from Otay Mesa.

They say particularly those who are at high risk for serious symptoms should be released immediately.

Natsound:Honking

On Tuesday, dozens of cars participated in a rally organized by a group called Otay Mesa Detention Resistance.

Natsound:Honking

The rally had already been planned before news of the positive case broke.

Dozens of cars — decorated with protest signs calling for the detainees release drove from Balboa Park to the ICE office in downtown San Diego.

Rally participants drove single file with their hazard lights on, honking their horns the whole time.

Beat

In other local headlines….

-In an attempt to decrease crowding in state prisons, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation announced Tuesday it's granting release to 3,500 inmates.

All were scheduled to be released in the next 60 days

-And health officials confirmed Tuesday that a passenger aboard the Celebrity Eclipse cruise ship that docked in San Diego Harbor this week has tested positive for the virus. Three crew members also tested positive

-And In response to the coronavirus pandemic, Covered California is expanding its special enrollment period through June 30.

-And the covid-19 numbers today, well, they aren’t good.

On Tuesday, County health officials reported two more deaths and 131 new COVID-19 cases in San Diego County.

Health officials said we can all expect to continue to see both of those numbers rise in the foreseeable future.

Beat

I’m Kinsee Morlan, and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters.

It’s Wednesday, April 1.

Stay with me for more of the local news you need.

Midroll 1

So, here’s a little non-covid-19 local news for you.

A large haul of drugs, including opioids, methamphetamine and cocaine, was seized from a cross-border tunnel Tuesday.

The tunnel was sophisticated…

It was equipped with ventilation, lighting and an underground rail system.

The 2,000 foot long tunnel connected warehouses in Tijuana and San Diego, extending about 2,000 feet.

Beat

Back to the coronavirus beat…

Empty U-C San Diego dorms may be converted into a care center to help with a looming hospital bed shortage.

County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said at a news conference that the dorm would be staffed with doctors and nurses.

FLETCHER 2A: "This would be for individuals presently in the hospital who are too sick to go home, but don't need to stay in the hospital. If we can create new rooms, we can transfer those folks there." (00:09)

San Diego State hasn't said yet if its dorms might be used.

Beat

The California Department of Health is coming under fire for ordering nursing homes to accept people with the coronavirus.

KPBS Reporter Amita Sharma has more.
______________________________________________
NURSING HOMES 1(AS) SOQ:
______________________________________________
The department of health has instructed California's some 1500 nursing homes to ban non-essential visitors to protect its elderly residents from COVID-19. But Monday night it issued a different kind of order.
The department directed nursing homes to accept people suspected or diagnosed with COVID-19, while taking "appropriate precautions to prevent the spread of the infection." Dr. Karl Steinberg, a nursing home and hospice medical director in North County, called the order reckless.

"What responsible healthcare provider would willingly put somebody who has this deadly, contagious illness into a place where it doesn't already exist? To me, that's essentially being an accessory to homicide?"

The department of health did not respond to a request for comment. Amita Sharma, KPBS News.

Beat

As cases of coronavirus continue to rise, so do the amount of people who are panic buying and hoarding supplies.

That's why many stores have turned to special hours for those most at risk for the virus, including seniors.

KPBS Reporter Matt Hoffman says while some seniors can go shopping themselves, others can't.
________________________________
SENIORDELIVERY 1 (:56)

It's 7-am and CNA Maria Hidobero (Wee-do-bro) of St. Paul's PACE is out shopping.

06;31;19;05
Cart rolling in

She's not shopping for herself, but for a senior.

06;31;47;12
So right now she's asking for a lot of basic needs but unfortunately it's going to be those toilet paper, hand sanitizer wipes, lysol which aren't available really at any stores

That's why grocery stores including the North Park Vons are holding special early hours where only seniors can shop. St. Paul's PACE is an all inclusive program for seniors and one of the services they offer is grocery shopping.. But that's not so easy right now with empty shelves.

07;24;22;01
I'm not complaining about my shopping, I figure my own things out but when you're trying to shop for someone who needs it, it's very sad to not be able to find certain things that they need for their everyday lives

Hidobero was able to get nearly all the food on her seniors shopping list, but wasn't able to get any cleaning supplies. Matt Hoffman, KPBS News.

If you know a senior who needs help during this time, please call 2-1-1.

Beat

The coronavirus has led more than a dozen states to postpone their presidential primaries.

It’s clear...The pandemic is reshaping the 2020 elections…

And that includes the race for San Diego mayor.

Thad Cow-ser is chair of the department of political science at UC San Diego.

He told Midday Edition that this pandemic will change both how voters cast a ballot and how candidates campaign.

POLITICSCOVID 1A (:19)
"Instead of talking about building new large programs and taking on big policy challenges, the question becomes where do these candidates see themselves as cutting city spending in order to manage what will likely be a deficit for one or more years. That's going to be the pressing question of this campaign."

Cow-ser says that there will be more voting by mail, which means it will take longer to tally the results.

To hear the complete interview with , subscribe to the Midday Edition podcast wherever you listen to your podcasts.

Beat

The Marines continue to take new recruits into boot camp in San Diego, even after the Commandant ordered a pause on the east coast, due to COVID-19.

In fact, another class of recruits arrived Monday evening in San Diego.

Capt. Martin Harris, a Marines spokesman, says they are taking extra precautions…

including extra medical testing and keeping new recruits in their own area for the first 14 days.

MCRD 2A
"We have had zero positives tests for COVID up to this point. There is a little bit of luck involved in that. So, a lot of training. A lot of planning and a little bit of luck has got us where we are today."

Beat

OK, so, it’s April 1.

For a lot of us, that means rent or a mortgage payment is due.

For San Diego residents who are experiencing financial hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there is help.

In March, the San Diego City Council passed a temporary ban on evictions in the City of San Diego.

This means that landlords cannot take action to evict a tenant for not paying rent that was due on or after March 12, 2020 if the tenant can’t pay because of the financial effects of COVID-19.

The temporary ban on evictions lasts until May 31, 2020, unless the City Council decides to extend it.

California Governor Gavin Newsom also ordered a statewide temporary ban on evictions…

And he announced similar relief for people who own their homes,

But won’t be able to make a mortgage payment because of the pandemic.

Four of the five major national banks have agreed to a 90-day forbearance on mortgage payments for those affected by COVID-19.

There is no income requirement for mortgage relief, but there needs to be evidence that the homeowners have been affected by COVID-19.

Ok, that’s all for this first day of April. Thanks for listening and, if you have some time on your hands, please take a minute to rate and review this podcast on Apple Podcasts. Thanks in advance.

Tuesday, March 31

Title: San Diego County Confirms 84 New COVID-19 Cases

Description: The number of COVID-19 cases in San Diego County increased to 603 Monday, a jump of 84 from Sunday. Plus: the state is looking for retired and student health care workers to help meet an expected surge of coronavirus patients in California and more local news you need.

------------------------------------------

Governor press cold open clip

Governor Gavin Newsom says the state needs more than 30,000 extra health care workers..

He says we need more doctors and nurses, pharmacists, administrative staff and mental health professionals.

So, to help meet that need, the state is temporarily suspending some licensure requirements..

And the governor’s calling on retired doctors and medical students to help treat an anticipated surge of coronavirus patients.

NEWSOM: If you're a nursing student, a medical school student, we need you. If you've just retired in the last few years, we need you. <<:09>>

Newsom says over the past four days, coronavirus hospitalizations have doubled…

and ICU patients have nearly tripled.

He says in the coming weeks, the state may need an additional 50,000 hospital beds.

Beat

Also in today’s local headlines:

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer issued an executive order Monday declaring all city employees disaster workers.

The declaration essentially makes it easier for city staffers to shift gears and help where they’re needed when it comes to the local COVID-19 emergency.

And San Diego County public health officials on Monday issued two new public health orders..

That limit cruise ships from both docking and disembarking in San Diego.

Beat

The local economy keeps taking hits…

San Diego Zoo Global announced Monday that both its Zoo and Safari Park will remain closed until further notice.

For families in need right now...The San Diego Food Bank and Del Mar Fairgrounds is planning a drive-through food distribution Friday.

And the latest Covid-19 numbers…. Cases grew by 84 on Monday, the biggest jump yet.

Now 603 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in San Diego County. Deaths are still sitting at 7.

Beat

I’m Kinsee Morlan and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters…
It’s Tuesday, March 31.
Stick around for more of the local news you need.

Midroll 1
The city of San Diego is offering grants and loans to small businesses impacted by the coronavirus shutdowns.

KPBS metro reporter Andrew Bowen says the response has been overwhelming.
______________________________________________________________
RELIEFFUND 1 (ab) 0:45 soq

AB: Almost as soon as the online application portal went live Friday evening, it crashed. It was back up about five hours later. Marchelle McKiernan owns Bluxom Salon in North Park. She says the city should have been prepared for the onslaught of web traffic.

MM: And what was most painful was looking at, you know, these different mayors high fiving our mayor for doing such a great job but not even considering that hundreds of business owners were in hysterics trying to get in line for this funding, and many of them will close if they don't get it.

AB: The city says it will still give out funding on a first come first serve basis, and that officials spent all weekend responding to voicemails and emails to ensure everyone was able to submit their application. Andrew Bowen, KPBS news.

Nursing students at San Diego State University and across the state have been pulled from working in hospitals because of the coronavirus outbreak.

But that's created a problem--they won't have the clinical hours they need to graduate.

KPBS reporter Claire Trageser says this could create a shortage of nurses next year.

Claire talks to SDSU nursing student Sarah Fo-SHAY.

NURSES (ct) 3:51 LIVE TAG

So, at the top of the show, you heard about the announcement Monday from Governor Gavin Newsom…

He said he's relaxing licensing rules for nurses, but he didn't make specific changes for nursing students. He's letting other departments make the final decision.

This story was done in collaboration with inewsource.. an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS

Beat

Lots of local arts and culture organizations are struggling right now.
They make their money from events, which have been canceled or postponed.

THe Media Arts Center San Diego had to cancel its San Diego Latino Film Festival this year…

Plus close its Digital Gym Cinema earlier this month because of the pandemic.

But KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando says, like a lot of other struggling arts organizations, Media Arts is looking to creative online options.

LATINO 1 (ba)

Digital Gym Cinema is now living up to its name as it brings some films from the canceled Latino Film Festival to audiences through digital streaming services. Festival founder Ethan Van Thillo says some distributors are working with art houses to provide alternate ways of showing films.

ETHAN VAN THILLO: They provide us with individual links where these links are just for our specific movie theater and then each time a person purchases the ticket, a percentage, 50 percent goes to our independent movie theater so again I think everyone needs to understand it's not business as usual not just for our non-profit but for the world around us. (:23)

This week Brazil's Bacurau, which was scheduled to play at the festival, is one of a handful of films now available as part of Digital Gym Cinema at home.

Beth Accomando, KPBS News.

If you are out there doing interesting things to stay connected during the time of coronavirus, I want to hear from you.

Tell me your story by emailing me at podcasts at kpbs dot org, or call or text (619) 452-0228‬.

Thanks for listening.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Title: Five San Diego Food Handlers Test Positive for COVID-19

Description: San Diego County health officials said Sunday that five food handlers have tested positive for COVID-19 — four restaurant employees and a grocery store employee. Plus: Costco is expanding its senior shopping hours, the county's homeless shelters are struggling to meet the needs of the people they serve amid the coronavirus pandemic and more local news you need.

------------------------------
Billboard:

San Diego County officials said Sunday that five food handlers have tested positive for COVID-19.
Four restaurant employees and a grocery store employee.
Press conference clip: Nathan Fletcher
The grocery store employee who tested positive is from an Albertson's store in Escondido..
Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said the store did the right thing..
It closed... alerted county environmental health officials..
Followed sanitation protocols
Then re-opening to customers.
Press conference clip 2
Costco is expanding its senior shopping hours due to high demand.
Starting this week, Costco warehouses will open from 8 to 9 a.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for members 60 and older.
Also in today’s local headlines:
San Diego gas prices have fallen to their lowest point in more than two years. The average for a gallon of self serve dropped to 3.11 as of Sunday afternoon.
Plus...The Celebrity Eclipse cruise ship is scheduled to dock in San Diego Monday…
It was turned away in Chile amid fears of the coronavirus.
There have been no reported cases of COVID-19 among the ship's roughly 1,500 passengers.

But passengers are still ordered to return straight home and spend 14 days in home isolation.
That’s per the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for anyone who traveled on a cruise ship.
Beat
And the latest on the local coronavirus numbers...
In #SanDiego county, confirmed cases grew by 31 on Sunday to 519 total.
Deaths remain at 7.
Beat
I’m Kinsee Morlan and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters…
It’s Monday, March 30.
Stick around for more of the local news you need.

Midroll 1
As the coronavirus pandemic escalates in San Diego…

The county's homeless shelters are now being stretched thin as they scramble to meet the needs of the vulnerable people they serve every day.

The coronavirus really has created a “perfect storm” that’s affected all aspects of daily life for these shelters..

Including staffing struggles and a dramatic decline in donations.

inewsource reporter Cody Dulaney has more

.……………………………….

DULANEY: Interfaith Community Services runs four shelters in North County, including the overnight emergency shelter at Haven House in Escondido.

When the governor ordered everyone to stay home to stop the spread of COVID-19, CEO Greg Angel turned Haven House into an all-day shelter. With that ... came a staffing challenge.

ANGLEA: "It requires more staff at a time when we have less staff available. We have a lot of staff who are over the age of 65, staff with chronic health conditions, and so they're all staying home to comply with the request to do so." (15 secs)

DULANEY: At Operation Hope in Vista, Executive Director Charity Singleton needs to raise over a hundred thousand dollars by June 30 to avoid laying people off and making homeless families leave.

SINGLETON: "
Our staff works so hard. They're the ones that create the space for our families to be successful. That's what goes through my mind almost 24 hours a day." (19 secs)

DULANEY: For now, both of these nonprofits are finding a way to keep their shelters operating.

For KPBS, I'm inewsource reporter Cody Dulaney.

inewsource is an independently funded, nonprofit partner of KPBS.

Beat

Four city of San Diego lifeguards have now tested positive for the coronavirus.

This as all city beaches and parks remain closed in an effort to stop the virus from spreading.

This is the first full weekend of beach closures.

And while some weren't heeding warnings before,

Lifeguard Chief James Gartland says nearly everyone is now complying...

LIFEGUARDS 2A
The success we're seeing and the compliance we're seeing it's great. It kind of restores your faith in humanity a little bit and makes you proud to be a San Diego Surfer (:09)

It's unclear when the beaches and parks could reopen,

but we do know lifeguards are preparing for a surge in cases.

Lifeguards are EMT's….so they could be called on for extra medical duties.

Chief Gartland told KPBS that all lifeguards have the proper protective equipment and will help out where they can.

Beat

The Department of Veterans Affairs is now screening patients for coronavirus in an attempt to protect the already vulnerable veteran population.

But some wonder whether the nation's largest healthcare system will be able to come up with a unified response to the pandemic.

Carson Frame of the American Homefront Project reports from San Antonio.

____________________

VAVIRUS 3:42 soq

A line of cars snakes through the Audie Murphy VA hospital campus, and spills out onto an adjacent street.
AMBI of engine noise and cars passing
Orange barricades funnel veterans' cars toward the front of the hospital, past little white tents. There, V-A volunteers ask questions about their travel history and symptoms.
ABBEY: Hi! Welcome to the VA. We're starting our screening process today. What's the purpose of your visit?
DRIVER: I work here.
ABBEY: Do you have a fever? Cough? Shortness of breath?
DRIVER: No.
If somebody answers yes, they send them to a second area, where people wearing masks and gowns check their temperature and ask more questions.
Fade down ambi of traffic
The coronavirus outbreak is projected to overwhelm the US hospital system, but VA Secretary Robert Wilkie says veterans will be taken care of.
WILKIE: So let me tell you, we are in the emergency preparedness business… we started marshaling our supplies in at the beginning of February, when our people told us that there was a potential for this coming here. So we have supplies, we have ventilators, we are working with the private sector to get as many masks as we need.
Wilkie has directed VA to stop all elective surgeries to free up medical personnel and preserve the system's blood supply.
Coronavirus cases are expected to climb among veterans, who tend to be older and have underlying medical conditions that put them at greater risk, though Wilkie says it happened yet.
WILKIE: Well to be honest with you, we have not had the great wave of veterans with this virus. It may come.
But not everyone at the V-A thinks the situation is under control.
PARK: This epidemic, both for the VA and for the larger world, exposes all the weaknesses in our system that are already there.
Marilyn Park is a legislative representative with the American Federation of Government Workers, a union that represents many V-A employees.
She says they're getting not getting enough guidance from top officials in DC, and that the coronavirus response is a patchwork that compromises the safety of both healthcare workers and patients.
PARK: "each facility has a different screening procedure. different entrances are closed. different screening questions are being asked. different triage is going on once they are screened."
Since the virus emerged in Wuhan, China in December, members of Congress have pressed VA about its ability to handle a pandemic.
VA representatives told Congress in March that up to 1 in 5 veteran patients could become infected and need care.
Senator Jon Tester of Montana says the department has been slow to talk about its needs and plans.
TESTER: I'll just be honest with you. They could have extra beds, but I don't know that they have the staff to man them...is the problem because we'e been understaffed in the VA for for a number of years, and a number of administrations...so we've got a lot of work to do.
The VA is the nation's largest health care system with 172 medical facilities and more than 1200 outpatient sites. But it's also spread out, with each center acting with a high degree of independence.
At a time when moving people, supplies, and equipment is necessary to save lives, Tester worries coordination could be a challenge. To deal with that, the VA has set up emergency operation centers in each of its 18 networks. Wilkie says those centers are sharing the same information across all medical facilities.
WILKIE: "Those centers reflect policy coming from us on what the protocol is for dealing with this situation. It is no different at Audie Murphy than it is from Hot Springs, South Dakota. It's the same medical standards."
SCENE / CAR SOUND
And at Audie Murphy Hospital in San Antonio, medical center director Chris Sandles watched the screenings in the parking lot.
SANDLES: We're making adjustments where we need to in the process. But ultimately, my goal is to make sure that we're keeping both our patients and staff as safe as we possibly can.
But he says it's a moving target.
This is Carson Frame reporting.

That story was produced by the American Homefront Project…

That’s a public media collaboration that reports on American military life and veterans.

Funding comes from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting

Beat

Media Arts Center San Diego had to cancel its San Diego Latino Film Festival and close its Digital Gym Cinema earlier this month because of the coronavirus pandemic.

KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando says…. like many arts groups….. Media Arts is looking to creative online options.

LATINO 1 (ba)

Digital Gym Cinema is now living up to its name as it brings some films from the canceled Latino Film Festival to audiences through digital streaming services. Festival founder Ethan Van Thillo says some distributors are working with art houses to provide alternate ways of showing films.

ETHAN VAN THILLO: They provide us with individual links where these links are just for our specific movie theater and then each time a person purchases the ticket, a percentage, 50 percent goes to our independent movie theater so again I think everyone needs to understand it's not business as usual not just for our non-profit but for the world around us. (:23)

This week Brazil's Bacurau, which was scheduled to play at the festival, is one of a handful of films now available as part of Digital Gym Cinema at home.

Beth Accomando, KPBS News.

Beat…

We’ve all seen our lives shift online….

My friends and I joined the masses of people holding virtual happy hours…

Clip

There’s also an app called Houseparty that’s gaining steam…

You can video chat and play games like pictionary on it…

It’s something to pass the time and feel a little less isolated than we all really all…

Check it out if you’re an extrovert like me who’s having a hard time with all this social distancing…

Beat

Before I go, I wanted to read you a quick question and answer from the KPBS new’s rooms Q&A blog…

Kpbs listeners and readers write in with their covid-19 related questions…

And our reporters find the answers…

So, here’s a question from Muriel. Muriel writes...

My HOA is split on whether to close our pool. Half of them say it should be closed. The other half say the chlorine in the pool kills coronavirus and so swimming is safe. Which is true?

KPBS news reporter John Carroll did some research and found that the CDC says there’s no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to humans through the use of pools and hot tubs.

So, Proper operation, maintenance, and disinfection of pools and hot tubs should remove or inactivate the virus that causes COVID-19.

But...that being said, the city of San Diego has closed all its city pools days ago.

The issue ther, though, was people gathering together in one spot, not the safety of the pool itself.

So, if you can enjoy your HOA’s pool without the chance of anyone else being around you, that could be ok. But John says it’s best to err on the side of caution and avoid using community pools for now.

For more questions and answers related to covid-19, go to kpbs dot org slash coronavirusquestions

That’s it for today. Thanks for listening. And please, do me a favor and take a minute right now to send this podcast to a friend. Local news keeps our community connected. And now, staying connected is more important than ever.

Saturday, March 28

Headline: First San Diego Police Officer Tests Positive For COVID-19

Description: A San Diego police officer from the Western Division became the first law enforcement officer in the city of San Diego to test positive for COVID-19, Mayor Kevin Faulconer announced Friday. Plus: Immigration detention facilities could become coronavirus hot spots and more local news you need.

San Diego County health officials confirmed three new COVID-19 related deaths Friday afternoon, bringing the total number of deaths to six.

The deaths included one man in his mid-50s..

and another male in his early 80s.

The county also reported the death of a 25-year-old mand ---a San Diego County resident who died in Riverside County where he’d been self-quarantining.

Beat

A San Diego police officer from the Western Division became the first law enforcement officer in the city of San Diego to test positive for COVID-19.
IN a press conference Friday, Mayor Kevin Faulconer said three lifeguards from San Diego Fire-Rescue Department have also tested positive.
Kevinpresserclip
Here’s a little bright spot for you.
The mayor also said that the city's $6.1 million small business relief fund is now accepting applications. Small businesses can apply at SanDiego.gov.
Beat
It’s Saturday, March 28. I’m Kinsee Morlan, and you’re listening to San Diego News Matters..

KPBS daily news podcast bringing you the local news you need.

Midroll 1 ad

The coronavirus made its grim arrival at San Diego County's senior care facilities this week.

KPBS Reporter Amita Sharma says three assisted-living communities have confirmed cases

and three others are awaiting results.
___________________________________________
COVIDSRCASES SOQ:
___________________________________________
KPBS has identified two of three facilities with cases.
Four people who work at La Vida Real's assisted living community in Rancho San Diego have tested positive for COVID-19. Another worker is awaiting results, according to a statement from the company.
Also, four elderly people who live in La Vida Real's memory care section are being tested after showing symptoms. Meanwhile, at San Diego's Stellar Care, one person has tested positive and several others have undergone testing. Beginning two weeks ago, senior care facilities countywide started banning all but essential staff Workers' temperatures are taken when they enter the facilities. But someone with the virus can be asymptomatic for two weeks. Amita Sharma, KPBS News.

San Diego’s Airport is feeling the squeeze of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Passenger traffic at San Diego’s International Airport is down 80 to 90 percent since the beginning of the month.

The airport is considered an essential service and must remain open,

but people just aren’t flying.

The San Diego Airport Authority’s Scott Brickner says the industry’s seeing a huge dip in passengers.

AIRPORT 2a :15
11:48:11 – 11:48:27 “at the beginning of the month, it started out we, I think, were up two percent year over year. And it started to decline slowly and then just very rapidly for the rest of the month. And even the last week, we’re down about 80 to 90 percent.”

Beat

The Navy now has the most cases of coronavirus among the services.

And now they’re trying to get a handle on why.

KPBS Military Reporter Steve Walsh explains.
--------------------------------------------------------------------TRT :49----
This week, Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modley says the Navy now has 104 cases of COVID-19 not counting families and contractors -- Together the Navy and Marines have one third of all the active duty cases in the US military.

"I will say our forces are all over the world. All the time. We also have big fleet concentration areas such as San Diego and Norfolk and other areas where we have a lot of people that are together but that's all speculation. We haven't done the forensics yet."

The USS Roosevelt has at least 23 confirmed cases of the virus. There have been several other cases of sailors assigned to San Diego-based ships testing positive. They were all on shore, in San Diego, when they were diagnosed. New recruits are screened on arrival at Marine Corps Recruiting Depot in San Diego. Two east coast recruits have tested positive. An exercise scheduled in April at Twentynine Palms has been canceled. Steve Walsh KPBS News.

Beat

Immigration detention centers could become Corona virus hotspots.

So far there have been no confirmed cases of Coronavirus in these detention centers in California,

but some civil rights groups this week filed an emergency ruling to force immigration and customs enforcement to step up its efforts to protect vulnerable detainees.
KPBS reporter max rivlen- Nadler's spoke with immigration attorney Dorian Edgar Seto about conditions inside the center.
Midday Clip

You can hear that full interview on the KPBS Midday Edition podcast. Just search for it wherever you listen to podcasts.

Ok, so, it’s the weekend guys, but here’s your reminder to stay home as much as you can. Most all parks and beached are closed...and even going on hikes in rural spots, you run the risk of running into crowds.

Keep on flattening that curve. Thanks for listening.

Friday, March 27

Headline: Your Coronavirus Questions, Answered

Description: The KPBS news team has been taking questions from readers and listeners to find out what people in our community want to know about the coronavirus pandemic. In today's podcast, we answer a question from someone who wants to know if dogs can get the disease. Also on the podcast: another local death from COVID-19, dentists are donating protective equipment to health care workers, local media outlets shutdown because of the pandemic and more local news you need.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY HEALTH OFFICIALS HAVE CONFIRMED A THIRD DEATH IN OUR AREA RELATED TO THE CORONAVIRUS.

THIS TIME, it was an 87 YEAR OLD woman.

CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER NICK YPHANTIDES (YIFF-in-TEE-dees) SAYS we’re IN THE "EYE OF THE STORM"

THURCOVID 1A TRT :09
SOT it is clear in the context of what is going on that we now have substantial transmission occurring here in our county

HE SAYS 40 PERCENT OF THE CASES ARE FEMALE AND 60 PERCENT ARE MALE..

And 21 PERCENT OF THE TOTAL CASES HAVE LED TO HOSPITALIZATION…

10 PERCENT of those have LED TO trips to the INTENSIVE CARE UNIT.

The good news?

OFFICIALS SAY RIGHT NOW THEY aren’t WORRIED ABOUT RUNNING OUT OF PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT FOR HEALTHCARE WORKERS,

And they’re not worried about HOSPITALS REACHING CAPACITY ANYTIME SOON

Sound Beat

I’m Kinsee Morlan, and it’s Friday, March 27.

You’re listening to San Diego News Matters.

KPBS’s daily podcast bringing you the local news you need.

Sound Beat

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Most of us Californians are sheltering in place...trying to do our part to keep the coronavirus from spreading.

But for the Navy and Marines...it’s tricky.

They’re trying to balance social distancing with military readiness.

KPBS Military Reporter Steve Walsh says the results can seem inconsistent.

____________________

MILREACT 3:46 soq

The Navy continues to announce more restrictions for bases around the country to stop the spread of COVID-19. Even so, unlike so many businesses in southern California, parking lots at Naval Station San Diego were still full the day the hospital ship USNS Mercy departed.

MARINE REACT came with family.wav
"We came down here with family, my inlaws, just to see her off."

Julio Quintona was among a handful of family members who were still allowed on the dock to watch their loved ones leave for LA, where the ship and its crew will backup local hospitals strained by the virus.

MARINE REACT greatest navy in the world.wav
"You always have worries and concerns when family departs. But All in Gods hands. Greatest Navy in the world"

The military's response to the pandemic can seem uneven at times. The Navy has suspended most recreational activities and events. The commissaries are still open but they are allowing people in a few at a time. Barber Shops shut down.

However, thousands of Marines are continuing to train in Yuma, Arizona despite at least one Marine at the base there t esting positive. Exercises like this one filmed last year are deemed essential and are still going ahead now.

MIL REACT Marines
"We need to get a ...we have too much dispersion across this front.."

Marines at Camp Pendleton are also still conducting exercises with the Air Wing at nearby Marine Air Station Miramar, despite positive tests at both bases. Spokespersons say the bases are isolating those who test positive and quarantining everyone they came into close contact with. Some morning formations were canceled. Others are going ahead. This even though Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered Californians to stay at home.

MARINE REACT Newsom abide by it.wav
"We direct a statewide order for people to stay at home. That goes into effect this evening. We are confidenent that people will do the right thing and abide by it."

The Navy and Marines are telling non--essential personnel to work from home, but it's up to local commanders to determine who is essential, said the head of the Navy Michael Gilday, in a briefing.

MARINE REACT GILDAY people.wav
"We really do trust the judgement of our commanders and we're giving them broad authority to do what they think they need to do to remain on mission and take care of people."

While the Navy encourages bases to listen to local authorities, it also put out guidance ((this week)) that makes clear the Navy isn't required to follow those orders. Nor are federal contractors, like NASSCO - a shipbuilder in San Diego, where the parking lots remain just as packed.

In the same briefing, Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modely acknowledged that not every commander may not be getting the message.

MARINE REACTSEC NAV commander.wav
"Everyone is taking this pretty seriously. We have heard about some anomalies and we are trying to address those, but generally speaking we are leaving those decisions to the commander."

The situation is rapidly evolving. 15 days after it left Vietnam, a country that already had a handful of cases, three sailors aboard the San Diego-based aircraft carrier USS Roosevelt tested positive -- the Navy's first cases aboard ship. The Navy hasn't determined whether the virus came from the port visit or possibly from one of the aircraft that arrived. Virtually all port visits have now been suspended for the roughly 100 ships deployed at sea. The Roosevelt has been sent to Guam. Everyone of the 5,000 sailors is now being tested for the virus.

Though, the vast majority of those ships DON'T have coronavirus test kits.
Before the Mercy departed for LA, the head of Navy Medicine in the west Rear Admiral Timothy Weber was asked why more sailors haven't been tested.

MARINE REACT test everyone.wav
"Navy medicine, military medicine says follow CDC guidelines and CDC guidelines say don't test everyone."

New numbers show the Navy and Marines have the highest infection rates among the services. New restrictions are expected. Steve Walsh KPBS News

This story was produced by the American Homefront Project, a public media collaboration that reports on American military life and veterans.

Funding comes from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting

Sound Beat

So, what's it like to be a medical student during the coronavirus?

Lots of med students in San Diego are finding their education on hold amid the pandemic.

UCSD School of Medicine has halted both in-person classes,

and clinical rotations where students interact face-to-face with patients.

But some students are finding ways to help.

KPBS reporter Andrew Bowen tells us how.
_________________________________________________________
MEDSTUDENTS (ab) 4:04 soq

Sewing machine noise

AB: Milli Desai is helping her mother sew cotton surgical masks. They're not suitable for doctors or nurses, but they can be useful for sick or elderly people if they have to go to the doctor or grocery store.

IMG_4122
MD: So I'm just going to put it on. And it fits pretty snug, and the good thing is there's pipe cleaner on top, which will fit to each person's nasal bridge.

AB: Desai is entering her fourth year of medical school at UCSD. The coronavirus outbreak forced the university to stop the rotations that make up most of a student's third and fourth years of medical school. Desai says it was the right call.

03:08
MILLI DESAI
UCSD MEDICAL STUDENT
MD: We may carry the disease and spread that both to our clinical teams, to our families when we return home and also to other patients. So there was a lot of concern about, "Are we needed in the clinical space, and what's the best space for us to contribute?"

AB: Med students without sewing machines are finding ways to pitch in, too. Third year med student Armando Gallegos Jr. helped start a donation drive collecting personal protective equipment for health care workers: surgical and N95 masks, gowns...

15:01:07
ARMANDO GALLEGOS, JR.
UCSD MEDICAL STUDENT
AG: Unopened goggles as well, disposable goggles, and gloves. They don't have to be sterile, they can be nitrile gloves to just help healthcare workers do their job.

AB: As word spread, they managed to collect hundreds of pieces of equipment this week.

15:00:25
AG: For me, I definitely wanted to do something as a student physician and try to help combat the pandemic in any way possible. And I thought this was definitely one of the ways we could help our physicians in San Diego.

AB: Caitlin Breen is about to start her residency at Rady Children's Hospital. She's been doing childcare for a physician she used to work with, going on bike rides, making obstacle courses. The 9-year-old she's watching has been learning piano from an app.

IMG_8325, NATPOP of piano playing

12:00
CB: She can already play some chords, she's using both left and right hand. I'm thoroughly impressed, and had Tick Tock and We Are the Champions stuck in my head all night last night.

AB: Breen and some classmates helped organize an online portal to match med student volunteers with health care workers who need help with childcare, grocery runs or other errands. She says being a doctor is stressful under normal circumstances. Now it's even worse.

6:11
CAITLIN BREEN
UCSD MEDICAL STUDENT
CB: Really from any level of the health care system, from your urgent care visit to your last line ICU, everyone is all hands on deck right now. And the kids are at home, so there's obviously that need where there hasn't really been before.

AB: Other students are calling patients to prepare them for telehealth visits or helping write patient discharge orders. Breen says med students can also use what they've learned to help folks understand what's happening.

10:43
CB: Even at my stage of training, I'm able to provide more of an informative role to friends and family. And I've really tried to adopt that role and embrace it, and pass out the message of ... why social isolation and all these things that we're doing can actually make a difference.

AB: Of course, med students are facing their own challenges, too. Take Milli Desai.

4:36
MD: So I'm five months pregnant, and was pregnant at the beginning of this year and did not really ever expect that I would be later pregnant during a pandemic.

AB: Desai's husband is a resident neurosurgeon. Given his higher risk of exposure to the coronavirus, and the threat of the disease complicating their pregnancy, they decided she should move in with her parents in LA. She says that separation is tough… and that it's a terrifying time to be entering a career in medicine.

7:24
MD: It really reaffirms our decision to go into health care to serve patients that really are the most vulnerable. (7:37) The scary thing I think is just how unprepared our whole system is for things that can happen like this. (8:22) It is very scary that we're often not supported by infrastructure and larger policies.

AB: Where doctors are finding some support, though, is among their future colleagues. Andrew Bowen, KPBS news.

Sound Beat

San Diego County officials say they have enough face masks for the region's health care workers despite the national shortage.

But even so, they’ve got an emergency backup plan.

KPBS health Reporter Tarryn Mento says officials have purchased nearly 90,000 bandanas just in case supplies dwindle.'
____________________________
BANDANAS 1 S/S (tm/jc) 1:05

The bandanas from local company Planet Apparel are meant to be worn over respirators or face masks. Co-owner Heather Treviño says using the tightly woven fabric on top of facemasks could make them last longer.

00;06;07;07 (:14) Not to replace a facemask but to use in coordination with facemasks is really what's going to help I feel we feel gunna prolong the lifespan of facemasks

The CDC has suggested health care workers use bandanas as a "last resort" if there is a shortage of protective equipment. Planet Apparel says San Diego County purchased the coverings last week for 97,000 dollars. But the county's medical operations center head Rob Sills says they don't need them just yet.

18:23 We're doing good right now, but looking out two months from now, we're making those plans in case it does happen.

Planet Apparel says its polyester bandanas are less porous than the common cotton covering. The company is contacting other cities in the U.S., including Dallas, Seattle and San Francisco. Tarryn Mento. KPBS News.

This report was a joint collaboration of KPBS and inewsource.

inewsource is an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS.

Sound Beat

So we’ve got the bandana backups…

And there’s also a group of local dentists who are stepping up to help stock up more medical supplies.

KPBS Reporter Matt Hoffman explains.
______________________________________________

DENTISTS 1 (:44)

6:18.396 Pfeffer
If our health workers become infected then we don't have any health workers to help us

So orthodontist Lindsay Pfeffer says local dentists are rallying.

5:14.003 Pfeffer
They just need a regular mask and so we have those in dentistry.

They're collecting desperately needed masks, gloves and other protective wear.

3:12.853 Lindsay Pfeffer, D.M.D., M.B.E., M.S. I-Orthodontics
You want to make sure you have a new clean mask for every patients - same with gloves you don't want to be limited on gloves that's the scariest thing in the world

The donations are being gathered at the San Diego County Dental Society on Morena Boulevard.

1:32.517 Pfeffer
We are sending them out to UCSD Scripps, Sharp, 2-1-1 and actually firefighters and police officers are people that don't have any of them and they're people who need them

Dentists are considered essential during the coronavirus outbreak - but they're being asked only to help patients that need emergency services. Matt Hoffman, KPBS News.

Sound Beat

So, the economy is taking a hard hit right now.

One sector that’s feeling the punch is local media.

Several San Diego outlets are shutting down or cutting back because of the coronavirus outbreak.

San Diego Magazine and San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles Magazine have stopped publication for now…

and have laid off most of their staff.

San Diego Reader has a message on its website saying that its business is hurting because of the coronavirus outbreak and is asking for donations.

And San Diego CityBeat has stopped putting papers out "until the economy improves," according to an email from its editor.

Here's San Diego Magazine Publisher Jim Fitzpatrick.

COVIDMEDIA 2A 0:14
"When businesses come back, we'll be back. And I expect to be back bigger than ever. When this is over, I'm one of those who believe things will come roaring back because there is so much pent up demand. We just have to weather this storm."

Experts who track the business of journalism are worried that this crisis will be the death blow to many local news outlets nationwide..

The industry has already been in significant decline since the Great Recession.

Sound Beat

So the KPBS newsroom is doing a lot of online Covid-19 coverage that doesn’t make it on air or into the podcasts…

One really useful feature is a new blog where the newsroom answers questions that people submit through the website.

For more covid-10 questions and answers, go to kpbs dot org slash coronavirusquestions

Hi Beth, thanks so much for talking with me for San Diego News Matters.

I’ve seen a lot of questions coming in via the system we use...so i know it’s been a really useful and valuable feature right now. You normally cover arts and culture, but in covid times you’ve stepped up to help answer some of the questions...and one question that came is was from Guillermo Cornejo who asked…

Q: Is pet coronavirus the same kind as the COVID-19 that affects humans?
You researched this a bit, what did you find out?
According to the College of Veterinary Medicine at University of Illinois, veterinarians are familiar with other coronaviruses, not the COVID-19, that cause common diseases in domestic animals. Many dogs are vaccinated for Canine Coronavirus as puppies.
And where might have this question or concern of Guillermo’s come from?
Part of the concern over pets and coronavirus came up when a dog in Hong Kong tested weakly positive for COVID-19.
The College of Veterinary Medicine points out that his canine patient was in close contact with an infected human, who was likely shedding large quantities of the virus. This led to the virus being in the dog’s nose. So there was coronavirus on the dog, just like there was coronavirus on the floor in the room, but the dog was not infected.
The 17-year-old dog has since died according to Time magazine, but no link to the disease has been proven at this time.
Ok, so, to reiterate, the CDC says “there is no evidence that companion animals, including pets, can spread COVID-19 or that they might be a source of infection in the United States...right?

Wednesday, March 25, 2020 Prototype

Headline: San Diego Fishing Industry’s Next Big Test: Coronavirus

Description: How the pandemic is hitting the region’s commercial fishing industry. Plus: new unemployment data, a possible coronavirus cluster among members of the local Democratic Party, breaking news from KPBS’ live covid-19 coverage and more.

----------------------------

It’ll take time before we know the full impact of coronavirus on San Diego's economy.

But the pandemic has already affected industries throughout the city — including one that helped define it.

Clip Fisherman
"We have had trouble with, when I was a tuna fisherman when some of the tuna canneries closed, but nothing, nothing like this. I've never seen it like this. Not this, not this bad."

Beat

Hi, I’m Kinsee Morlan.

It’s Wednesday, March 25th.

And this is San Diego News Matters…

KPBS’s daily podcast bringing you the local news you need.

Midroll 1 Ad

If you haven’t already felt the economic impact of coronavirus yourself...

You probably know someone who has.

People are losing their jobs...or being temporarily furloughed...hours are getting drastically cut…

The economy is on lockdown right alongside most of us.

New data from the San Diego Workforce partnership shows nearly 200-thousand Californians filed for unemployment in the first few days of partial business closures.

And more layoffs and restrictions could be on the way as cases of coronavirus continue to rise.

KPBS Reporter Matt Hoffman says businesses and restaurants are trying to find new ways to keep their doors open and staff employed.

But it’s been tough.
___________________________________________________________
WORKFORCE 1 (:44)

1:32 Brant Crenshaw, co-owner Social Tap
We have to do a core.. And it sucks.. No reason of their own

Brant Crenshaw is the co-owner of social tap in downtown. He's had to lay off nearly all of his staff.

10:38.415
They've all been extremely understanding they're all in the industry they're seeing they're same friends in the industry see the same fate

Only a handful remain as the restaurant is now trying to change its business model from mainly dine in orders to takeout and delivery. If he can build up that side of the business he'll be able to hire back more staff.

10:53.269
We're working our butt off trying to get.. So we can hire our people back

Crenshaw says if people don't support restaurants now, some will close and never reopen. Matt Hoffman, KPBS News.

Beat

Commercial fishing used to be a booming business in San Diego.

Environmental restrictions, foreign competition and other factors have eviscerated this sector of the local economy beginning in the mid- to late-20th century.

Now can the once-thriving industry survive the Coronavirus?

inewsource reporter Brad Racino looks into it.

FISHERMEN (BR) 3:04

RACINO: Once called the Tuna Capital of the World, San Diego is home to some 130 commercial fishermen who bring in millions of pounds of fish each year.

NAT SOUND FROM DOCKS

RACINO: But the restaurants that buy the vast majority of their catch have closed to contain the pandemic. Now, the Saturday fish market — which is allowed to remain open on the San Diego Bay — is the fleet's main way to reach customers.

HAWORTH: "It's hard if you catch thousands of pounds of fish to sell to a consumer."

RACINO: David Haworth is a San Diego commercial fisherman. Even with decades of experience in the industry, nothing has prepared him for this.

HAWORTH: "We have had trouble with, when I was a tuna fisherman when some of the tuna canneries closed, but nothing, nothing like this. I've never seen it like this. Not this, not this bad."

RACINO: San Diego's fishermen have never lived through anything quite like this pandemic. Tim Jones, captain of the Gutsy Lady, said he's decided to shut down and wait out the storm.

JONES: "We've got to pay our insurance, we got to pay our slip fees, but as soon as we're done with this little maintenance thing we're doing we're just going to shut it down. ... It's going to hurt. But I'm sure we'll get through it."

RACINO: Coronavirus isn't the first to test the resilience of San Diego's commercial fishermen.

RACNO: Environmental restrictions, foreign competition and other factors eviscerated this once-thriving sector of the local economy beginning in the 20th century. Today less than 10% of the seafood consumed by San Diegans is domestic and grocery store shelves are more likely to display fish from China, Thailand or Vietnam than from California.

RACINO: But San Diego has an open air fish market. I visited it on Saturday, curious whether anyone would show. Downtown was mostly empty, save for joggers taking advantage of the open streets. But along the docks ...

NAT SOUNDS FROM MARKET

RACINO: Hundreds of customers lined up to buy fish …

NAT SOUNDS FROM MARKET

RACINO: There were indicators of the new normal. Fishmongers wore surgical masks, Harbor Police ensured customers stood six feet apart and hand sanitizer abounded. But Haworth and most of the other vendors sold out within a few hours.

HAWORTH: "It's just important for us if the public could support us too and try to buy local and go through the little extra effort if they have to drive down to let's say the Tuna Harbor Dockside Market or other markets up and down the coast where they can buy direct from the fishermen right now. Because the middle men are all temporarily out of business"

RACINO: Fish markets in California are considered "essential" and will remain open during the state's stay at home order. A slice of San Diego's original economy determined to survive the world's latest disruption.

RACINO: For KPBS, I'm inewsource reporter Brad Racino.

You can see more photos of Saturday's fish market online at inewsource dot org.

Inewsource, by the way, is an independently funded nonprofit partner of KPBS.

Beat

If you need a reminder of why gatherings big and small have been canceled, listen up:

It now appears that days before and after the March 3 primary were the beginning of an outbreak that's sickened several people in the local Democratic Party.

Democrats who spent time together on Election Night and at events before and after the election have tested positive for coronavirus.

Here’s KPBS reporter Claire Trageser with details.

DEMOCRATS 1 s/s (ct) 1:00 soq

Four people, including San Diego County Democratic Party chairman Will Rodriguez-Kennedy, have tested positive for the virus. Two of them, Rodriguez-Kennedy and Chula Vista Councilman Steve Padilla, are in intensive care at local hospitals.

The others are recovering at home.

Other people active in the party are also self-isolating and showing symptoms of COVID 19. But as of now there aren't reports of more e positive tests. That's according to party spokeswoman Eva Posner.

She says the four who did test positive spent time together on Election Night and at events before and after the election.

DEMOCRATS 1A
"We all naturally spent a lot of time together, but we also spent a lot of time out in the community, especially our candidates and elected officials. So it could have come from anywhere and it could have spread in several different ways."

Posner says the biggest concern right now is not politics, but that everyone gets better

Claire Trageser, KPBS News

Beat

I don’t know about y’all, but I’ve barely left my house at all in the last few weeks.

My window to the world has largely been twitter, Facebook and Instagram…

And in my social media feeds over the last few days I’ve been seeing these photos of San Diego that make it look like a total ghost town.

It’s weird. Good -- because that’s what has to happen to stop the spread of coronavirus -- but still weird to see.

One place that’s usually packed but is now mostly deserted -- Ocean Beach.

O Beacians are getting used to their new lives without their beaches and waves.

KPBS Reporter Erik Anderson says that's not the only thing closed.

SURFER 1 (sea) soq :47

Yellow police tape is a line of demarcation and police are on hand to make sure people observe the city's ban on using local beaches. But beaches aren't the only things shut down. In Ocean Beach the neighborhood's only public restroom, located at the lifeguard tower, is shut down. San Diegan Doug Matson thinks that's a problem.

Doug Matson, San Diego
11:11:34 – 11:11:50 "There's about a hundred homeless people that hang out around here a lot and I'm just wondering where they're going to go to the bathroom. I think we know where that's going to go. And that's going to create problems I think."

People were mostly observing the closure today, and there were plenty of police on hand to remind them if they got too close.

Erik Anderson KPBS News

San Diego News Matters Long Close Music

Coronavirus news is moving fast these days.

So, I wanted to take a minute to check in with the kpbs news team…

Today, Erik Anderson is on the breaking covid-19 news beat..

Erik thank you so much for getting us updated…

So, Erik, the county is giving daily updates. And today, it sounded like the basic message was to keep on keepin on with our social distancing right?

Answer TK

And the county also said they expect things to get worse before they get better.

What other takeaways were there from today’s county updates?

Answer TK

And at the state level, Governor Gavin Newsom had some good news for people who might be worried about how they’re going to make their next mortgage payment right?

Answer TK

Alright, any other local news we need related to the pandemic right now Erik?

Thanks.

Get more up-to-date info on KPBS’ live coronavirus coverage stream online at kpbs org slash coronavirus….

Beat

Thanks for listening to San Diego News Matters. Reach out to the podcast team anytime by texting or calling (619) 452-0228‬ or emailing us at podcasts at kpbs dot org. Thanks.

San Diego News Matters podcast branding

San Diego News Matters

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.