The number of Imperial County residents infected with the coronavirus continues to grow.

According to the Imperial County Public Health Department , as of Friday there are 1,036 active cases of COVID in the county. That is up from 1,023 reported the day before. The number of deaths has remained at 353 for the past three days. 

Imperial County and local healthcare providers have been gearing up to handle the current spike in COVID-19 cases as well as preparing for an anticipated jump following the Thanksgiving holiday. El Centro Regional Medical Center , with the assistance of the State of California , has completed a temporary 50 bed facility on the north side of the hospital campus. The beds are available for medical / surgical patients as needed. Pioneers Memorial Hospital , also with assistance from the state , has also added temporary beds to increase capacity for expected additional patients. An Alternate Care Site at Imperial Valley College was reopened on Thursday and has already seen patients transferred to the facility. In addition to the COVID-19 patients in local hospitals , this weekend is traditionally one of the busiest for the local facilities because of the large number of off roaders that converge on the Imperial Valley desert.