Transmission of COVID-19 continues to spread throughout Los Angeles County and as long as cases continue to increase, there will be little change to the health orders that were issued by the Department of Public Health.
Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer reminded everyone during her weekly briefing on Wednesday that individuals are responsible for their actions, so they must continue to avoid large gatherings with people outside of their household, practice frequent handwashing and wear cloth face coverings when venturing outside of their houses and into public.
She specifically spoke about those who have attended gatherings to celebrate sports teams’ victories, as well as those who have attended protests.
“If you were in a crowd with non-household members who were shouting, chanting or singing, with no masks, there’s a chance you could be infected,” Ferrer said. “It’s very important that you stay away from other people, especially those at a greater risk from becoming seriously ill.”
She encouraged people in those situations to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms for a full 14 days and get tested for the virus.
In addition, she mentioned that the state has updated their guidelines on gathering with those from outside the household. The gathering of no more than three households will be allowed, but all involved must remain at least six feet apart, wear face coverings and limit the duration of the gathering.
“The health officer orders will be updated tomorrow to align with state guidance,” Ferrer said.
As the virus continues to be transmitted, the death toll continues to rise. She announced on Wednesday, an additional 22 deaths. Five were over the age of 80 and four had underlying health conditions; seven were between 65 and 75 and six had underlying health conditions; five were between 50 and 64 and four had underlying health conditions; one was between 30 and 49 and did not have underlying health conditions; and one was between 18 and 29 and also did not have underlying health conditions. There was no information available on the three deaths reported by the City of Long Beach.
The total number of deaths is now at 6,812. Of the newly reported deaths, two people resided in skilled nursing facilities.
In addition, 1,349 new cases were reported, bringing the total number to 285,016 in Los Angeles County. Long Beach has a total of 12,471, while Pasadena is reporting a total of 2,655 cases.
There are also 1,889 cases among the homeless. Currently, 720 people are hospitalized, with 27% in the ICU and 13% on ventilators.
To date, 2.8 million people in the county have been tested for COVID-19 and 9% have tested positive.
Los Angeles County Health Services Director Dr. Christina Ghaly said the number of patients requiring hospitalization seems to be increasing, slightly, despite it being at a six-month low. The number of current hospitalizations is 720, compared to 2,085 on July 15.
The transmission number, or R, is currently modeled at 1.05, whereas two weeks ago, it was at 1.0
“If R is greater than one, we anticipate the number of new cases will increase over time,” she said. “More than likely, the number of cases will go up, as transmission is spreading at a slightly faster pace than what I reported a couple weeks ago.”
However, Ghaly said the public and private hospitals’ bed capacity and ability to care for COVID-19 patients is expected to be adequate over the next four weeks.
“This slight increase conveys what I know is still a very true message: The COVID pandemic is not gone,” she said. “If we give it conditions to spread, then the virus will take advantage of that fact, it will thrive and transmission will increase. We can’t let our guard down. This is simply not over.
Here is the latest number of cases and deaths in the Antelope Valley:
Los Angeles County:
• Lancaster: 3,771 cases, 65 deaths (includes cases associated with correctional facility outbreaks).
• Palmdale: 4,527 cases, 77 deaths.
• Acton: 77 cases, two deaths.
• Agua Dulce: 30 cases, no deaths.
• Desert View Highlands: 52 cases, one death.
• Lake Hughes: Four cases, no deaths.
• Lake Los Angeles: 261 cases, four deaths.
• Leona Valley: 22 cases, no deaths.
• Littlerock: 87 cases, one death.
• Littlerock/Juniper Hills: 19 cases, no deaths.
• Littlerock/Pearblossom: 101 cases, no deaths.
• Llano: Three cases, no deaths.
• Pearblossom/Llano: 24 cases, one death.
• Quartz Hill: 190 cases, 11 deaths.
• California City: 124 cases, 65 recovered, seven presumed recovered.
• Edwards: 17, 10 recovered, two presumed recovered.
• Rosamond: 286 cases, 134 recovered, 31 presumed recovered.
• Tehachapi: 1,130 cases, 72 recovered, 44 presumed recovered.