BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Kern County Public Health is urging residents to get tested for COVID-19 to help slow the spread of the virus and help the county move into the next tier of reopening.
The department said Kern County has achieved a case rate of 6.3 percent, below the 7 percent limit to be eligible for moving forward into the next tier. However, the rate has been adjusted by the state up to 7.2 percent due to testing in the county being below the state’s average.
KCPH says that because of this, the county is prevented from being able to move forward from the purple tier into the red tier.
Now, the county is pursuing different options in getting its testing rate up, such as recently announcing a new program for county employees that would give them eight hours of paid time off for completing six or more COVID-19 tests before the end of the year.
“Our community has made great progress in slowing the spread of the disease and more testing will help us continue to disrupt the spread of the virus and reopen our economy,” said KCPH Director Matt Constantine.
There are nine free county or state testing sites throughout Kern County that residents can go to. To find locations and make an appointment, visit kerncounty.com or call 211. Additionally, most local healthcare providers such as Omni and Clinica Sierra Vista are also providing testing.