Tension is high once more as protesters take to the streets following the shooting of Wisconsin man Jacob Blake. He was shot seven times by police and is now paralyzed as a result.
An estimated 150-200 people gathered in Los Angeles on Monday to protest the shooting — something that did not go unnoticed by Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer.
During her regular COVID-19 update, she talked about best practices for those who protest.
Stay home if you feel sick, seek immediate attention as needed if you are having serious COVID symptoms and discuss with your provider, whether you should be tested, were some of her guidelines. Others included wearing a face covering over your nose and mouth, keeping physical distance (at least three steps from others not in your household), wearing eye protection and keeping hands clean before, during and after the protest. She advised people to carry hand sanitizer unless they know they’ll be able to access a restroom to wash their hands with soap and water.
“For those attending peaceful protests, be aware of the risks that come with those who gather from other households during the pandemic,” she said. “If you think you were exposed during the protest, quarantine for 14 days and stay away from all other people, especially those who are at risk.”
In addition to her advice, Ferrer had some encouraging news to share. She said the 14-day case rate is now below 200 per 100,000 people. It is at 98 per 100,000 people.
“I’m glad to see this number come down,” she said. “We do need to continue taking all the steps we were taking these past few weeks, so community transmission rates stay low enough so we can continue our recovery journey.”
Los Angeles County Health Services Director Dr. Christina Ghaly said Wednesday that the transmission number is still estimated to be at 0.92, which is where it was last week.
“As long as it stays at or below one, we can expect it will decrease over time,” she said. “But any relaxation (of health orders) could mean the numbers climb back up.”
Despite the transmission rate remaining steady and the 14-day case rate improving, some with COVID-19 are still dying.
Ferrer announced an additional 58 deaths, bringing the total number in Los Angeles County to 5,663. Of those recently deceased, 24 were over the age of 80 and 20 of those had underlying health conditions; 15 were between 65-79 and 13 had underlying health conditions; nine were between 50-64 and five had underlying health conditions; and five were between 30-49 and all had underlying health conditions. Five deaths were reported by the City of Long Beach, bringing their total to 10,241. Pasadena has a total of 2,310 deaths.
Of the 53 deaths reported in Los Angeles County, excluding Long Beach, 11, or about 20%, resided in skilled nursing facilities.
“Our hearts go out to everyone who’s grieving,” Ferrer said. “We’re so sorry for your loss.”
There are 1,546 cases among the homeless as well. She said there’s been a gradual increase in the last few weeks among that group.
In addition, there have been over 22 million tests conducted in Los Angeles County and over 10% have been positive. The total number of cases for Los Angeles County is 235,386, with 1,642 reported on Wednesday.
Here are the latest number of cases and deaths in the Antelope Valley:
Los Angeles County
• Lancaster: 2,803 cases and 37 deaths (include cases associated with correctional facility outbreaks).
• Palmdale: 3,504 cases and 51 deaths.
• Acton: 58 cases, two deaths.
• Agua Dulce: 24 cases and no deaths.
• Desert View Highlands: 41 cases, one death.
• Lake Hughes: Two cases, no deaths.
• Lake Los Angeles: 191 cases and four deaths.
• Leona Valley: 16 cases and no deaths.
• Littlerock: 78 cases and no deaths.
• Littlerock/Juniper Hills: Eight cases and no deaths.
• Littlerock/Pearblossom: 76 cases and no deaths.
• Llano: Three cases and no deaths.
• Pearblossom/Llano: 19 cases and one death.
• Quartz Hill: 143 cases and 11 deaths.
• California City: 94 cases, 33 recovered, four presumed recovered.
• Edwards: 11, three recovered, two presumed recovered.
• Rosamond: 220 cases, 90 recovered, nine presumed recovered.
• Tehachapi: 961 cases, 352 recovered, 9 presumed recovered.