LA County Reports 42 New Coronavirus Deaths Today, 472 New Cases
Los Angeles County's coronavirus task force has confirmed an additional 42 deaths today and 472 new cases, bringing the total number countywide to 10,496. The mortality rate for COVID-19 in L.A. County remains at 3.8%.
L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer called it "sad news," adding that today topped yesterday as the highest number of deaths reported for any single day.
"To all of you who have lost families and friends to COVID-19, you're in our thoughts and our prayers every day," Ferrer said. "I'm very sorry for your loss and I wish you all peace."
Ferrer noted that as of today, 60,000 people in the county have been tested for COVID-19 and 11% of those tests were positive. She added that the Public Health Department is continuing to open new testing facilities – 3 of them opened today.
"This will increase our testing capacity for symptomatic people who live anywhere in the county," she said.
- 24 people who passed away were over the age of 65 and 13 of the them had underlying health conditions
- 11 people who died were between the ages of 41 and 65 and 7 of them had underlying health conditions
- 1 person between the ages of 18 and 40 died. They also had underlying health conditions.
- The county does not have information on 6 of the cases, as 3 of them were in the City of Long Beach and the other 3 were in Pasadena
RACIAL AND ETHNIC BREAKDOWN OF CONFIRMED DEATHS
For the 330 deaths where race and ethnicity have been identified, here is the latest confirmed breakdown:
- 15% African American [9% of county residents]
- 17% Asian [15.4% of county residents]
- 34% Latino or Latina [48.6% of county residents]
- 31% White[26.1% of county residents]
- 2% identified as belonging to a different race or ethnicity
OTHER KEY FIGURES REPORTED TODAY
- 363 cases reported in Long Beach
- 179 cases reported in Pasadena
- 26% of all people who have tested positive for COVID-19 are currently experiencing homelessness
- 1501 people are currently hospitalized with the virus. Of those, 31% are in the ICU and 19% on on ventilators.
- The total confirmed number in institutional settings (like nursing homes, assisted living facilities, shelters, treatment centers, supportive living etc.) is 1764. That includes both staff and residents.
- 133 residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities have passed away. Those individuals account for 33% of total deaths in L.A. County.
- 70 confirmed cases in county jails (15 inmates and 55 staff)
- 34 confirmed cases in state prisons (23 inmates and 11 staff)
- 32 confirmed cases among L.A. County Sheriff's Department staff (432 staff are quarantined, 250 have returned to work)
- 16 confirmed cases among L.A. County Fire Department
Ferrer said that the County has assigned Department of Public Health staff to "increase support" to nursing homes and assisted living facilties and provide the employees of those facilities with personal protection equipment.
She added that she expects cases in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, jails and prisons to increase over the next few weeks. She thanked the healthcare workers and staff of these facilities for doing everything they can to slow the spread.
"These are settings where the job is particularly difficult, as many of the residents may have underlying health conditions," she said.
NOTES ON RE-OPENING THE ECONOMY
The Department of Public Health is working on widespread contact-tracing to identify and isolate anyone who has come into contact with infected individuals and immeditaly quarantine them.
Ferrer echoed what Governor Newsom said yesterday, pointing out that when businesses do re-open, the public will still be expected to practice social distancing measures. There will be limits, for example, on how many people can enter retail stores, museums and cultural sites when they re-open. Trails and bike-paths might need to be one-way when they re-open so that people can maintain a safe distance from one another. Temperatures may be taken to allow entry to some of these spaces.
"Our goal is to get as many people back to work as possible," Ferrer said. "But we also need to make sure that we do this in a way that protects all of the employees, employers and customers."
ANTIBODY TEST UPDATES
Ferrer said that last weekend, a random sample of 1000 adults were tested for COVID-19 using an antibody test, which determine whether or not someone has already been exposed to and/or infected with the virus.
This will be especially important for people who may be asymtopmatic.
Once these tests are available to the general public and approved by the F.D.A., the public health department will have a more accurate count of the number of people in L.A. County that have been infected.
Ferrer said that the county will continue these sample tests every three weeks, at least through the summer and possibly longer. She added that they are also planning to do more target studies of antibody tests on higher-risk groups, like healthcare workers and nursing home residents.