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Over 1,500 newly infected people in Shafter, Wasco

There were 1,620 newly infected people in Wasco and Shafter reported by the Kern County Public Health Department on Tuesday, Jan. 25.

This is a total increase from Jan.18 of 13,833 to a Jan. 25 total of 15,163 in one week’s time.

As of Jan. 25, the federal government withdrew its requirement that workers at large companies be vaccinated or regularly tested for covid-19. The Supreme Court blocked enforcement earlier in the month.

The federal agency that regulates workplace safety also said on Tuesday that it is still considering whether the vaccinate-or-test rule should be imposed on a non-emergency basis.

In Kern County, there are a total of 204,686 cases to date since the beginning of the pandemic.

“There were also three new deaths reported on Tuesday and a total of 1,977 covid-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic, Public Information Officer Michelle Corson said.

She also said that as of Monday, Jan. 24, 1,096,988 doses of the vaccine have been administered to Kern County residents. About 53% of Kern County residents have been fully vaccinated.

“We continue to review the State’s modeling for planning purposes,” Corson added. “The modeling is currently suggesting that Kern’s peak of COVID-19 patient census in the hospitals will be tomorrow [Wednesday, Jan. 26] with 337 COVID-19 patients.

Corson also said that the pre-hospital and hospital systems continue to be impacted by the pandemic. There are currently two State-staffed teams are in Kern County that have expanded both regular and ICU hospital bed capacity at Kern Medical and Adventist Health, Bakersfield and Delano.

This provided approximately 25 ICU beds and 15 med-surge beds to Kern’s capacity. Corson also said that staffing will remain through February, at which time the needs will be reassessed. A third State-staffed team is expected to arrive at Samaritan hospital to expand Kern’s capacity by an additional 14 ICU beds and 18 regular hospital beds. This operation is expected to be operation by the weekend and will be in place through March 31, at which time, the needs will be reassessed.

There are also three State-staffed strike teams consisting of six nurses and six paramedics on each team assigned to the emergency department in three hospitals to help with offloading patients from ambulances and patient care in the emergency room. It’s expected these teams will be in Kern through the end of February.

Individuals are not required to report COVID-19 home test results to Public Health; however, home test kits recommend a person that tests positive to contact their healthcare provider and report positive results by following the instructions on the home test kit or to Kern County Public Health at


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