SHERIFF’S DEPUTY HAS TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID-19 VIRUS

A patrol deputy with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the department said Monday (March 23). That deputy is resting at home and is experiencing flu-like symptoms, according to a Sheriff’s Press release. “Although we do not know when and where the deputy was exposed to the virus, we continue to encourage all members to heed the warnings of health officials while on and off duty,” they said. The Sheriff’s Department said that out of respect for the deputy, no additional information will be released regarding identity or medical treatment.

TWENTYNINE PALMS CITY COUNCIL MEETS IN CLOSED-DOOR SESSION

Due to the “stay-at-home” mandate in the face of the COVID-19, tonight’s Twentynine Palms City Council meeting will not be open to the public, though questions and comments can still be included in the proceedings via email. Reporter Heather Clisby has the details…

Tonight, the Twentynine Palms City Council meeting will be closed to the public as Governor Gavin Newsom has issued a stay-at-home order to curb the spread of COVID-19. Comments or questions can be still recognized during the proceedings by emailing them to info@29palms.org. The meeting can also be streamed live at 6 pm via the city’s website, https://www.ci.twentynine-palms.ca.us/.

The council will conduct a design review and possible approval of public buildings in Project Phoenix. The building plans pertain to the Joshua Tree National Park Visitor Center and Cultural Museum and the Twentynine Palms Community Center. The buildings will be put out for bid in the fall of 2020 with construction slated to begin in February 2021 and completed in February 2022.

And to address the current situation, the council will adopt a resolution to ratify the emergency proclamation made last week, likely to be renewed every 14 days, as needed.

HEALTHCARE DISTRICT CANCELS TWO UPCOMING EVENTS

The Morongo Basin Healthcare District has canceled two upcoming community events. The Flying Doctors event, scheduled for Saturday, April 25, at Copper Mountain College has been postponed to a later date. The Community Health and Resource Fair, scheduled for May 9 in Yucca Valley, has been canceled.

CRITICAL BLOOD SHORTAGES LOOM

Canceled blood drives amid COVID-19 fears have severely impacted U.S. blood supply. Healthy donors are needed to avoid critical blood shortages. Assignment reporter Keith Bailey tells how we can help…

LifeStream Blood Bank and other blood centers across the country are struggling to maintain stable inventories and avoid a critical blood shortage. The school closures and business shut-downs have resulted in more than 80 canceled blood drives, which means over 5,000 pints of blood LifeStream anticipated collecting have disappeared.

Cancer patients, trauma victims, and patients who need regular transfusions need blood every day. Blood bank shortages will put these patients at risk. Blood drives are not gatherings; they are blood donation operations that are essential to our nation’s health care system. LifeStream Blood Bank events are exempt from the state wide shelter-in-place/stay-at-home order that governor Gavin Newsom issued last week.

Donating blood has no impact on the donor’s immune system, so help avoid a critical blood shortage. To schedule a blood donation appointment call 800-879-4484.

BLOOD DRIVE IN TWENTYNINE PALMS TODAY

Blood drives are considered an essential service, and blood donations are way down due to the public’s fear of coronavirus. Blood is desperately needed; a blood drive will be held from 1 to 6 p.m. today, March 24, at Little Church of the Desert, 6079 Adobe Road in Twentynine Palms. All donors should be free of infections or illness, weigh at least 115 pounds, and not be at risk for AIDS or hepatitis. Donors will receive a free cholesterol screening and incentives. To make an appointment to donate blood, call 800-TRY-GIVING.