What to know
- Thursday’s COVID-19 case count was 37,215
- This is the single highest number of people in a single day from the entire pandemic.
- Also, hospitalizations have risen.
Los Angeles County had a shocking 37,215 COVID-19 new cases on Thursday. This is the single-highest number of cases in a single day since the pandemic. Hospitalizations continued to climb, but still far below the peak during the last winter’s spike in infections.
The county’s daily record of 27,091 new cases set last Friday broke the previous record. On Thursday, the county reported 30 additional COVID-related deaths.
According to state statistics, there were 2,661 patients with COVID positive status in county hospitals on Thursday. This was up from 2,461 on Wednesday. There were 352 patients in intensive care on Thursday, compared to 330 a day prior.
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Since February 2021, the COVID-positive patient count has not been as high. The number is still below the peak of more that 8,000 patients who were infected with COVID last January at the height the virus outbreak.
Although hospital visits have increased, officials noted a lower increase in COVID and other non-COVID patients.
Contrary to last winter’s surge which saw an increase in hospital census, and as we also observed over the summer surge. Now, with the current surge, the hospital census is much more stable.” county Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said. This can change. … But I do want to note that we haven’t seen the same rise we saw at the beginning of the winter surge last year with our surge in hospitalizations this time.”
In reality, many COVID positive patients in hospitals didn’t realize that they were infected until they went to the hospital for another reason. Ferrer stated that 75% of COVID-positive patients were admitted to hospital in November, before the Omicron COVID variant spread. However, as of December 31, only 45% COVID patients were admitted for the disease. Others only tested positive for the virus when they were admitted for treatment.
Is it possible to be contagious due to the rapid spread of COVID-19’s omicron variant?
It makes sense to have a lot more community transmission. This will lead to more people being tested positive for COVID illness, but they are also likely to be hospitalized for other reasons. … It’s encouraging to see there are fewer people hospitalized for COVID illness during this surge, especially compared with prior surges. However, I want to point out that COVID positive patients are a significant strain on the health system even if they aren’t there seeking treatment for COVID related illness.
People who test positive for COVID require resource-intensive transmission-based precautions, including isolation rooms, cohorted staff and personal protective equipment, all of which add a particularly high burden when so many of our hospitals are … short on staff,” she said.
The latest statistics on COVID-positive hospital admissions released Thursday continue to show that people who are not vaccinated are more likely to be admitted than those who have been vaccinated. Ferrer pointed out that hospitalizations are increasing in all three categories: unvaccinated and vaccinated as well as vaccinated-and-boosted. Unvaccinated individuals are 38 times more likely than those who have had a booster shot and been fully vaccinated.
The county amended its public health order this week due to rising infection rates. Employers are required to provide enhanced masks to employees who work indoors or in close proximity to others.
Wednesday’s order will go into effect on Jan. 17. It requires that employers provide well-fitting surgical masks or medical-grade masks to affected workers.
The revised order also modified the definitions of mega outdoor events.” where masking is required, to 5,000 or more attendees; and the definition of indoor mega”Events to 500 people and more These numbers are in line with the state’s health orders. According to the county’s health order, food and drinks should only be consumed in designated areas.
The county’s new mask requirements for county workplaces mirror a county order for K-12 schools that was released late last week. It requires teachers and staff to use higher-grade face covers. USC announced this week that it will require all staff and students to wear higher grade masks when classes resume in person.
As of Thursday, the average daily rate for people who tested positive for the virus was 21.9%. This rate was lower than 1% one month ago.
The demand for COVID testing has increased rapidly. Long lines have become a regular sight at testing centers throughout the county. Take-home tests are also in high demand, but they quickly disappear from the shelves.
Los Angeles County had to stop offering at-home free tests this week. Fulgent Genetics sent a test to residents who signed up for the program through their website. Fulgent states that the program is currently suspended on the county’s website. Fulgent also stated that it was being held back due to high demand.
Fulgent states that no new orders will accept until Jan. 12. Still being processed are samples from previously distributed tests.
Ferrer stated that efforts are being made in order to increase the number of COVID testing locations.
According to county statistics released Thursday, more than 6.4 millions people were fully vaccinated. 199,314 of them have tested positive for the virus for a rate 3.1%. Meanwhile, 3,348 have been admitted for 0.05%. 625 people who were fully vaccinated have already died. That’s a 0.01% rate.
However, the testing-positivity rate may be artificially low because of the large number of people who take-home tests but don’t report their results.
Overall, 79% have received at least one dose, while 71% have been fully vaccinated. 7.5% of the 10.3 million residents have had at least one dose and 67% have been fully vaccinated.