The new cases involve people ranging in age from the 20s to older than 70. Health officials believe that dozens more people have the illness in the community, but they have not yet been tested.
Of the 13 new cases, four are in Santa Maria, bringing the total for that community to 44.
Three more people tested positive for the virus in the communities of Montecito, Summerland and Carpinteria, bringing the total in those areas to nine. Three people tested positive in the communities of Lompoc, Mission Hills and Vandenberg Village, bringing that total to 17 cases.
Two people on Friday tested positive in Santa Barbara, bringing the city’s total to 30. One person tested positive in the Santa Ynez Valley, which includes the cities of Solvang, Buellton and the communities of Santa Ynez, Los Alamos, Los Olivos and Ballard. The Santa Ynez Valley has a total of five confirmed cases.
Overall, Goleta has four cases, and Isla Vista has one. The unincorporated area of the Goleta Valley and Gaviota have nine cases. Orcutt has 18 cases. The unincorporated cases of Sisquoc, Casmalia, Garey, Cuyama, New Cuyama and Guadalupe have 15 cases.
Of those who have been diagnosed with the virus, 86 are recovering at home, 26 are recovering in the hospital and 35 have fully recovered. The conditions of four people were unknown to county health officers on Friday afternoon. One person, a North County man in his 60s, has died from the virus.
Officials on Friday discouraged extended family members from gathering outdoors.
“As tempting as it is to think that it won’t matter if we have an extended family get-together, because ‘it’s just family,’ don’t think that,” said Gregg Hart, chairman of the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors. “COVID-19 can and will spread among people who are related and among strangers. The only people who should be together outdoors are those currently living in the same household.”
Hart encouraged people who are hiking, walking on the beach or doing anything outdoors to have a backup plan if there are groups of people doing the same thing.
“Don’t think it won’t matter because others are doing it,” Hart said. “It does matter. Every single additional indirect contact can spread the virus.”
Santa Barbara County Public Health Director Van Do-Reynoso also urged people not to gather — even if they are members of the same family.
“I urge everyone to continue physical distancing during important family milestones, such as birthdays, funerals or religious celebrations,” Do-Reynoso said. “It’s natural to want family and friends over to celebrate or to offer comfort or encouragement. However, we can only slow down COVID-19 in our community if we continue to maintain physical distance.”
She said maintaining the distance is particularly important right now because of upcoming Passover and Easter celebrations. She said people should plan to celebrate using video calls instead of in-person gatherings.
Dr. Henning Ansorg, the county’s public health officer, reiterated that people should wear masks at grocery stores, pharmacies and places where there are long lines.
“We are still experiencing a national shortage of medical-grade masks, and therefore everybody’s asked to please be creative,” Ansorg said. “Homemade solutions made of cloth, when covering the nose and the mouth, are perfectly functional for this purpose of limiting the spread of respiratory secretions, which is the intent of the covering when worn in public.”
The Public Health Department is planning to make more hospital beds available should they be needed.
Cottage Health has 126 patients, and 247 beds remain available. Of the total patients, 18 are in isolation for COVID-19 symptoms. Of those, eight are in critical care.