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LA County Tops 200,000 COVID-19 Cases

An attending physician listens to the breathing of a patient who is recovering after admission to an intensive care unit (ICU) in the coronavirus (COVID-19) patient nursing department of The HMC Westeinde Hospital in The Hague on April 4, 2020. REMKO DE W
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Los Angeles County has the highest number of reported COVID-19 cases of any county in the U.S. -- and that includes current hot-spot counties like Florida’s Miami-Dade or Maricopa County in Arizona. Since the pandemic began, more than 201,000 Angelenos have tested positive for the coronavirus, health officials announced Thursday.

To be fair, L.A. County has the most population of any other county in the nation with almost twice as many people as Cook County, the second most populated.

Timothy Brewer, an epidemiologist and medical doctor at UCLA said that case numbers are important, but to get a sense of the current trend, pay attention to the case rate per 100,000 people.

“Unfortunately, [L.A. County’s] case rate has continued to rise throughout the outbreak and it's currently running about 1,870 cases per hundred thousand population,” Brewer said. “Back in April we were around 400 cases per hundred thousand population.”

He said public health departments need more resources to expand testing and contact tracing so that people who are positive can isolate completely to stop the spread.
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“We're seeing public health departments that are being pushed to the wall,” he said.

Since January, the coronavirus has killed 4,869 people in L.A. County. That makes it the second leading cause of death after coronary heart disease and far deadlier than the flu.

Nationally, low-income people who tend to be essential workers, and people of color are bearing the brunt of the pandemic.

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