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Confirmed Coronavirus Cases In LA County Top 70K; More Than 2,800 Deaths Reported

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Los Angeles County officials reported 1,633 new confirmed cases of coronavirus today, bringing the total to at least 70,476 cases countywide. In total, 2,512 cases have been reported in Long Beach and 1,023 in Pasadena (those two cities operate their own health departments).

County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer also reported 20 new deaths of COVID-19 patients. The total number of deaths countywide now stands at 2,832 people.

So far, 93% of those who have died had underlying health conditions, Ferrer said, speaking at a periodic update from the county's coronavirus task force via remote live stream.

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The death toll at institutional facilities in L.A. County continues to climb. Ferrer reported that 1,502 residents at those facilities have died, and nearly 90% lived in nursing homes.

DISPARITY REMAINS

Ferrer provided a racial breakdown of the confirmed deaths, based on information for 2,629 of the victims. Here's a breakdown of the proportion of overall deaths by race and ethnicity:

  • 41% Latino / Latina [48.6% of county residents]
  • 11% African American [9% of county residents]
  • 17% Asian [15.4% of county residents]
  • 29% White [26.1% of county residents]
  • “Slightly less than” 1% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander [0.4% of county residents]
  • 1% identified as belonging to another race or ethnicity

The data were also presented per 100,000 residents in each ethnic group, which helps to "better understand which groups are disproportionately affected by COVID-19," Ferrer said. Here's that breakdown:

  • 52 - Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
  • 33 - African American
  • 32 - Latino/Latina
  • 23 - Asian
  • 17 - White
Ferrer also explained the disparity by community poverty levels:
"...we also see that people who live in areas with high rates of poverty continue to have almost four times the rate of death for COVID-19: 56 deaths per hundred thousand people. This is compared with communities with very low poverty levels, who had a death rate of 15 deaths per hundred thousand people."

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HOSPITALIZATIONS DOWN OVERALL, BUT NOT IN EVERY COMMUNITY

Asked about the trend of hospitalizations of COVID-19 patients, Ferrer said that, overall, health officials have "seen a decrease in sort of the daily census" of hospitalizations, but explained that's not the case for every hospital:

""The disproportionality that we see, in particular who's passing away, also affects who's hospitalized, and those hospitals that are serving our black and brown communities are likely to have higher rates of hospitalizations, as a reflection of who, in fact, is more likely to be very sick with COVID-19."

ARE WE MOVING TOO QUICKLY?

Asked how she would address county residents who are concerned the county is reopening too much too soon, Ferrer repeated that people who are older and/or have underlying health conditions, who are more at risk of serious and fatal COVID-19 cases, should continue to stay at home and avoid many of the activities and places now getting back to business.

For everyone else, she advised people to assess the risk for themselves and "not to do activities that are beyond your comfort zone."

She also noted that a lot is riding on individual businesses to follow the new health protocols as more sectors and spaces reopen:

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"... a successful recovery journey for L.A. County depends in particular on those sectors that reopen to actually adhere to our protocols. If there is not adherence to the protocols, if we are not taking the basic steps to protect workers, and then to protect customers and visitors, this will be way more risky than it needs to be."

BY THE NUMBERS

Here are some other key figures being reported today:

  • More than 761,000 people have been tested for COVID-19 and had their results reported to L.A. County health officials. Of those tests, 8% have been positive.
  • There are currently 1,839 people hospitalized with COVID-19. Of those individuals, 29% are in the ICU, with 20% on ventilators. Ferrer said: “This is a stark reminder that although the number of people in the hospital on any given day has gone down over the last couple of weeks, the people who are in the hospital often require care for many days, and they require care in the intensive care unit.”
  • The county health department is currently investigating 501 institutional facilities where there's at least one confirmed case of COVID-19. Those sites include nursing homes, assisted living facilities, shelters, treatment centers, supportive living, and correctional facilities. Ferrer said there are 16,142 confirmed cases in those facilities — 10,510 residents and 5,623 staff members.
  • Ferrer said 488 cases have been confirmed among homeless people in L.A. County — 211 of whom were sheltered, Ferrer said.
  • There have now been 1,027 confirmed cases “at some point in time” in county jail facilities, Ferrer reported. In total, 768 inmates and 259 staff members have tested positive.

OVERALL LOOK AT LA COUNTY NUMBERS:

Here's a look at longer-term trends in the county. To see more visit our California COVID-19 Tracker and choose L.A. County or any other California county that interests you. These numbers are current as of Thursday, June 11:

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