LA County reports rise in COVID case, warns of winter surge

AS the 2022 holiday season nears, Los Angeles County health officials are warning residents of a possible winter surge as case rates are rising.

The LA County Department of Public Health on Friday, Nov. 4 reported nearly a 10% increase in the seven-day average case rates compared to the week before.

The 7-day average case count in the county is 1,083, a nearly 10% increase from one week ago when the 7-day average of 988 cases was reported.

Over the past seven days, the average number of daily COVID-positive patients in LA County hospitals increased slightly to 403. The week before, the average daily COVID-positive patients per day was 389.

Deaths, which typically lag hospitalizations by several weeks, have decreased slightly and they are at an average of 8 deaths reported each day this past week.

Careful monitoring of case rates and early alert signals, officials said, will help the county prepare for a winter surge and more infectious variants.

Public Health is encouraging those eligible — people 5 years and older — to get the updated COVID-19 bivalent booster, which can protect against the original virus and the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants.

In LA County, nearly 85% of residents 5 years and older have received their primary vaccine series, however, only 11% of those eligible have received the new bivalent booster.

“With recent unusually high levels of flu and other respiratory diseases, there are signs the county could be headed toward a COVID surge this fall and winter. As families are about to start their holiday travel and get-togethers, it continues to be important to follow simple steps to prevent respiratory illness and COVID-19. The first, and most important, health measure we can take is to receive the new COVID-19 bivalent booster if we are at least two months out from our last dose,” Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement.

These updated Fall COVID-19 boosters, plus flu vaccines, are readily available at Public Health sites, pharmacies, and other locations across the county. Seniors and residents who can’t easily leave their home can contact Public Health telehealth services at (833) 540-0473, seven days a week, from 8:00 am to 8:30 pm to arrange for at-home COVID-19 Fall booster and primary series vaccinations or transportation to a vaccination center. Insurance is not required, and callers can be assisted in multiple languages.

Residents can also go to VaccinateLACounty.com to find nearby vaccination sites, request a mobile vaccination team for your worksite or community event, or an in-home visit if you or someone you know is homebound.

Public Health has reported a total of 3,493,150 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of LA County. The current positivity rate is 5.0%

There are 453 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized. Testing results are available for more than 12,653,863 individuals, with 24% of people testing positive. (AJPress)

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