Public Health Reports the Highest Number of New Cases Since the Summer Surge in July
Public Health Confirms 20 New Deaths and 3,780 New Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) has confirmed 20 new deaths and 3,780 new cases of confirmed COVID-19. This marks the highest amount of positive cases in one day, not associated with a backlog of cases, since mid-July. The elevated number of cases today reflects increased testing across the county; yesterday over 56,000 tests were processed, and the positivity rate remains high at almost 6%.
To date, Public Health has identified 336,549 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 7,266 deaths. There are 966 people currently hospitalized with COVID-19, and 28% of these people are in the ICU. Today’s current hospitalizations is the highest it has been in nearly two months.
Younger people continue to drive the increase in community transmission in the county. Over 74% of the new cases today are from people under the age of 50 years old; conversely, 90% of today’s reported deaths are people who are over 50 years old. The rise in cases complicates planning for increasing the numbers of students returning to schools, further re-opening additional sectors and permitting additional activities.
Residents between the ages of 30 and 49 years old have the highest percent of new cases (34%), followed by residents between the ages of 18 and 29 years old, comprising 27% of all new cases.
“To the many people across our communities who are facing a holiday season without their loved ones who passed away from COVID-19 this year, we are keeping you in our hearts and thoughts,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “Many younger people are out socializing with non-household members, raising concerns that asymptomatic young people are helping to spread the virus to more vulnerable people at a time when cases are surging dangerously in the county. While the effect of the coronavirus on younger people may not be significantly associated with deaths, younger people definitely act as a transmission connector to individuals at a higher risk. Spread among family members and at worksites will also increase considerably as we see more and more cases among our younger residents. During this time of surging cases, in order to protect those most vulnerable, we ask that everyone, whether you are indoors and outdoors, keep face coverings on and stay 6 feet away from those who are older and those who have underlying health conditions. We do not want to bear witness to increased deaths among more of our beloved residents.”
As the holiday season approaches and COVID-19 spread is increasing, it is critically important that everyone follow the simple public health safety measures that provide protection from COVID-19 and minimizes spreading it to friends and family. There is a high level of risk associated with gatherings of any kind, especially when people are inside, and not keeping physical distance of at least 6 feet and wearing face coverings. Because COVID-19 spreads from person to person through respiratory droplets, face coverings combined with other preventive measures, such as frequent hand-washing and physical distancing, provides the best protection. If you are planning to get together with others, it is important that your plan follows the Public Health safety guidance on small private gatherings; this includes gathering outdoors only, with up to two other households, for less than two hours.
Of the 20 new deaths reported today, nine people that passed away were over the age of 80 years old, six people who died were between the ages of 65 and 79 years old, three people who died was between the ages of 50 and 64 years old, and two people who died was between the ages of 30 and 49 years old. Fifteen of the 20 deaths reported today were people with underlying health conditions, including seven people who were over the age of 80 years old, four people who were between the ages of 65 and 79 years old, two people between the ages of 50 and 64 years old, and two people between the ages of 30 and 49 years old.
Ninety-three percent of the people who died from COVID-19 had underlying health conditions. Of those who died, information about race and ethnicity is available for 6,856 people (99 percent of the cases reported by Public Health); 52% of deaths occurred among Latino/Latinx residents, 23% among White residents, 14% among Asian residents, 9% among African American/Black residents, less than 1% among Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander residents and 1% among residents identifying with other races. Upon further investigation, 96 cases reported earlier were not L.A. County residents.
Testing results are available for more than 3,365,000 individuals with 9% of all people testing positive.
The Reopening Protocols, COVID-19 Surveillance Interactive Dashboard, Roadmap to Recovery, Recovery Dashboard, and additional things you can do to protect yourself, your family and your community are on the Public Health website, www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.