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San Bernardino County reports another 18 coronavirus deaths, biggest daily increase in fatalities

San Bernardino County Department of Public Health workers collect coronavirus samples at a drive-through testing site in Montclair.
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

San Bernardino County reported 18 additional deaths related to the coronavirus Wednesday, bringing the county’s toll to 138. It was the highest jump in the number of deaths the county has reported to date, jumping 15% from the previous day’s total of 120.

According to San Bernardino Public Health Department information officer Lana Culp, about 60% of the deaths reported in the last 14 days have been linked to facilities where large numbers of people are living, such as nursing homes.

“It seems that the outbreaks occurring in our congregate settings are accounting for the majority of deaths,” Culp said, adding that it was too soon to determine what caused Wednesday’s increase.

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More than 3,100 San Bernardino residents have been infected by virus, health officials reported, and the daily case count has continued to rise. The county has the fifth-largest number of cases in the state, after Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego and Orange counties.

Thirty-six of the county’s cities and communities have recorded infections, with San Bernardino, Chino, Fontana and Ontario being hit hardest.

Several outbreaks have taken place in institutional settings, including one Yucaipa care center where 115 staff and residents were infected and 20 have people died.

Roughly 2 million people live throughout San Bernardino County’s 20,000 square miles, making it the largest county in the continental U.S. More than 33,000 residents have been tested for COVID-19, a number that has increased in recent weeks as testing capacity has expanded.

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The virus has infected people of all ages throughout the county. Roughly 79 young people ages 14 and younger have been infected, as well as 69 individuals between the ages of 15 and 19. Those between the ages of 50 and 59 account for 620 cases - the highest number among any age group.


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