L.A. County sees another COVID-19 spike, reports more than 100K cases


Los Angeles County Department of Public Health officials announced 2,903 additional COVID-19 cases, the single largest one-day spike since the start of the outbreak, bringing the countywide total to 100,772. 

“This is the largest number of new cases we have ever reported,” Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said Monday.

The seven-day average of daily reported new cases of COVID-19 is nearly 2,000, an increase from the 1,379 average two weeks ago, per Public Health.

As of this week, there are 1,710 people hospitalized due to COVID-19, a significant uptick in daily hospitalizations since the 1,350-1,450 reported in recent weeks, according to Public Health.

“While we’ve not hit the levels of daily hospitalizations that we saw at our highest point in late April, we are quickly heading in that direction because we have so many more people that are now positive,” Ferrer said. “The fast increases in cases, positivity rates and hospitalizations are cause for all of us to have great concern.”

Of those 1,710 currently hospitalized, 26% are in the ICU and 17% are on ventilators, Ferrer added.

The cumulative positivity rate has also continued to increase in recent weeks, rising from 8% to 9%, with testing results available for more than 1 million individuals, while the seven-day average for the daily positivity rate has increased from the lowest daily rate of 4.6% positivity in late May to 8.4%, according to Public Health.

In the Santa Clarita Valley, where a majority of cases are attributed to an outbreak at the Pitchess Detention Center, Public Health officials reported 54 additional COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, 44 of which came from the city of Santa Clarita. This brings the local total to 3,132, while the death toll remained at 31. 

Countywide, Public Health reported 22 new deaths related to the virus Monday, bringing the total to 3,326 in L.A. County.

Of those who died in the last 24 hours: 18 were over the age of 65, 17 of whom had underlying health conditions; and four were between the ages of 41-65, one of whom had underlying health conditions.

Over the weekend, Public Health reported 4,711 cases and 43 deaths in L.A. County, noting a “sharp increase” in both the number of cases and hospitalizations.

On Sunday, Public Health officials also said they would be amending their health order to once again require all bars and wineries to close just a week after being given the green light to reopen, following an announcement from Gov. Gavin Newsom that requires these establishments in seven counties, including L.A. County, to do so, due to a surge in COVID-19 cases in those areas.

“This happened because we, along with many other counties, are seeing a great deal of community spread,” Ferrer said. “And while it’s so disappointing to take a step back on our recovery journey, it’s critical that we work together to protect the health of our residents and the capacity of our health care system.”

This past weekend in L.A. County, Public Health inspectors found that 49% of bars and 33% of restaurants were not adhering to physical distancing protocols indoors, while in 54% of bars and 44% of restaurants workers were found not wearing face coverings, Ferrer said. 

“We know that there have been many businesses and many individuals that have done everything right,” Ferrer added. “From the very beginning, they’ve adhered to every, single health officer order and followed our directives, but as you see from our data, we also know that there are a number of businesses and individuals who have not followed the directives, and they’ve gone back to living as if COVID-19 is not in our community.” 

In addition, a survey conducted by the University of Southern California on self-reported behaviors found a 14% decrease in individuals remaining at home except for essential activities, along with a 36% increase in individuals who have had close contact with someone from outside their home. 

Data generated by the Foursquare app on June 20, the first weekend that bars in L.A. County were permitted to reopen, showed that more than 500,000 people visited nightlife spots across the county.

“Immediate action is needed, and all of us, businesses and individuals, need to figure out how we personally are going to help to turn things around,” Ferrer said. “Otherwise, we’re quickly moving towards overwhelming our health care system and seeing even more devastating illness and death.”

That being said, Ferrer continues to urge county residents to follow public health directives, including maintaining physical distancing, wearing face coverings and avoiding crowds.

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital reported Wednesday a total of 2,725 patients had been tested — many of whom have been tested more than once — with 282 tests returning positive, 2,766 negative and 50 still pending, according to hospital spokesman Patrick Moody. Thirteen people remained in the hospital, and 99 have recovered and been discharged, Moody added.

The number of SCV cases, including all area health care providers’ daily figures and those at Pitchess Detention Center, totaled 3,132 as of Monday, which, broken down into region, are as follows: 

City of Santa Clarita: 1,155
Unincorporated – Acton: 22
Unincorporated – Agua Dulce: 13
Unincorporated – Bouquet Canyon: 1
Unincorporated – Canyon Country: 45
Unincorporated – Castaic: 1,786 (majority of Castaic cases come from Pitchess Detention Center, exact number unavailable)
Unincorporated – Lake Hughes: 1
Unincorporated – Newhall: 3
Unincorporated – Placerita Canyon: 0
Unincorporated – San Francisquito Canyon/Bouquet Canyon: 0
Unincorporated – Sand Canyon: 0
Unincorporated – Saugus: 5
Unincorporated – Saugus/Canyon Country: 0
Unincorporated – Stevenson Ranch: 59
Unincorporated – Val Verde: 29
Unincorporated – Valencia: 13

To view all coronavirus-related stories, visit signalscv.com/category/news/coronavirus.

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