News Release
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For Immediate Release:

August 05, 2021

As COVID-19 Spread Continues, L.A. County Metrics Begin to Show Progress; School Reopening Protocol Revised - 19 New Deaths and 3,672 New Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County

Although transmission in Los Angeles County remains at a high level, the County’s case rate dropped to 21.1 new cases per 100,000 residents, a decrease from last week’s rate of 24.1 cases per 100,000. Although today’s rate will likely change somewhat over the coming days as additional test results are reported, this suggests the County’s rise in cases may be plateauing.

Today’s test positivity rate is 4.7%; a decrease of more than a full percentage point from last week’s rate of 5.8%.

Two and a half weeks ago, at the time of the Los Angeles County Health Officer Order requiring universal masking indoors, cases were doubling every 10 days; the much smaller increase the County is seeing now is what we hoped would happen after implementing an effective public health measure. This serves as a reminder that masking remains an effective way to slow transmission.

It is valuable to compare trends in L.A. County with those in the rest of the state after L.A. County became the only County with an indoors masking requirement on July 18. Comparing cases that occurred the week ending July 25 with those that occurred the week ending August 1, Los Angeles County experienced a 22% increase in cases from 16,000 cases to 20,000 cases. Meanwhile, across the remainder of the state, reported cases went from 29,400 during the week ending July 25 to 46,000 cases the week ending August 1, an increase of 57%. Although there may be reasons contributing to these differences beyond masking, data from around the world and from L.A. County have repeatedly shown that masking is a valuable layer of protection against transmission of respiratory viruses.

Today, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) confirms 19 new deaths and 3,672 new cases of COVID-19. To date, Public Health has identified 1,315,313 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 24,739 deaths. Of the 19 new deaths reported today, three people who passed away were over the age of 80, three people who died were between the ages of 65 and 79, six people who died were between the ages of 50 and 64, three people who died were between the ages of 30 and 49, and one person who died was between the ages of 18 and 29. Two deaths were reported by the City of Long Beach and one death was reported by the City of Pasadena. While the number of people dying from COVID-19 remains relatively low, the seven-day average number of deaths, unfortunately has doubled in the past month, from three daily deaths to six daily deaths.

There are 1,279 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized; an increase of 361 people over the past week. Testing results are available for nearly 7,410,000 individuals with 17% of people testing positive. As schools and institutes of higher education return to session and their routine testing programs come back online, Public Health expects to see hundreds of thousands more test results each week and in parallel with those, significant increases in cases. Given that just about every death is preventable, these losses are particularly tragic.

Public Health recently revised the K-12 school reopening protocol so that changes will be in place when L.A. County’s children return to school. Face coverings will continue to be required indoors for everyone regardless of vaccination status, including during indoor PE classes, unless a person is alone in a room. Students who are exempt from mask wearing because of a documented disability or other condition should not be excluded from in-person education, and appropriate accommodations should be made on a case-by-case basis. Students who are excluded from campus because they elect not to wear a face covering should be offered alternative educational opportunities.

Public Health continues to recommend physical distancing as long as it does not interfere with full-time attendance for all students, and infection control remains essential.

Many schools have established routine testing programs to provide an additional layer of protection. All unvaccinated students and staff should be included in routine testing and where resources are sufficient, fully vaccinated individuals can also be included.

Every school will have a plan on how to manage cases and outbreaks and will notify Public Health whenever there are cases. All positive cases are required to isolate, and all close contacts of each case should be tested and are required to quarantine unless they are fully vaccinated and without any symptoms.

As a reminder, teens between 12 and 17 years old are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine, a regimen of two doses given three weeks apart, and they are considered fully protected two weeks after their last dose. In addition to the 135 vaccine events that high schools and middle schools are planning countywide in August that the County is supporting, we continue to offer Pfizer vaccines to children at all County and City sites, and these vaccines are available at many other sites throughout the county.

"We share our deepest condolences with all those who have lost friends, loved ones, and family and wish you healing and peace,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “We are extremely grateful to everyone who has helped reduce potential transmission by getting vaccinated and masking up. We recognize that, given the recent increases in cases, there is anxiety around school re-openings. While schools have been working closely with us over the summer to create environments that promote safety, there are steps parents and caregivers can take to help make back to school as safe as possible for young students. State and County protocols currently require universal masking when indoors on all school campuses, but every school has their own individual set of protocols and procedures. Communicating with your child’s school ahead of the start of the school year can help ensure you’re prepared to help educators keep students safe. If any of your children are 12 or older, please let them know about the importance of getting vaccinated and help them get to a vaccine site.”

As of August 1, more than 11,158,934 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to people across Los Angeles County. Of these, 6,190,247 were first doses and 4,968,687 were second doses. Ninety percent of L.A. County seniors 65 and over, 72% of residents 16 and over, 71% of residents 12 and over have received one dose of vaccine and 53% of L.A. County teens between the ages of 12 and 17. Of the nearly 10.3 million L.A. County residents, including those who are not yet eligible for the vaccine, 53% are fully vaccinated and 61% have received at least one dose.

Among the more than 5 million fully vaccinated people in L.A. County, Public Health identified 15,628 people fully vaccinated who tested positive for COVID-19 as of August 3; this is less than 1% of all vaccinated individuals. Of those who tested positive, 446 were hospitalized, up from 410 the week prior. This translates to a rate of 0.009% of all fully vaccinated people ending up hospitalized. Deaths in this group is also very low at 0.0008%, representing 41 people fully vaccinated that passed away. These small increases, while indicative that fully vaccinated people do become infected, and that more have become infected during this summer surge than before, still provide compelling evidence that fully vaccinated people remain at low risk for becoming infected and even lower risk for having a bad outcome if they are infected.

Anyone 12 and older living or working in L.A. County can get vaccinated against COVID-19. Visit: www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) and www.VacunateLosAngeles.com (Spanish)to find a vaccination site near you, make an appointment and much more. Vaccinations are widely available throughout L.A. County and many sites are open on weekends and have evening hours. Vaccinations are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status. If you don’t have internet access, can’t use a computer, or you’re over 65, you can call 1-833-540-0473 for help finding an appointment, connecting to free transportation to and from a vaccination site, or scheduling a home-visit if you are homebound.

COVID-19 Sector Protocols, Best Practices, COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard, COVID-19 Surveillance Interactive Dashboard, Recovery Dashboard, and additional actions you can take to protect yourself, your family and your community are on the Public Health website www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.

Laboratory Confirmed Total Cases 1315313*

Deaths 24739

Age Group (Los Angeles County Cases Only-excl LB and Pas)

Gender (Los Angeles County Cases Only-excl LB and Pas)

Race/Ethnicity (Los Angeles County Cases Only-excl LB and Pas)

Hospitalization

Deaths Race/Ethnicity (Los Angeles County Cases Only-excl LB and Pas)

CITY / COMMUNITY** Cases Case Rate

These numbers are subject to change based on further investigation. 48 cases previously reported were not in Public Health's jurisdiction. * Means that case numbers include cases associated with correctional facility outbreaks located in the city/community. **Rate is crude and is per 100,000. This represents the number of cases per 100,000 people and allows for the proportional comparison of cities of different sizes.

The Department of Public Health is committed to promoting health equity and ensuring optimal health and well-being for all 10 million residents of Los Angeles County. Through a variety of programs, community partnerships and services, Public Health oversees environmental health, disease control, and community and family health. Nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health comprises nearly 4,500 employees and has an annual budget of $1.2 billion. To learn more about Los Angeles County Public Health, please visit www.publichealth .lacounty.gov, and follow LA County Public Health on social media at twitter.com/lacounty.gov, and follow LA County Public Health on social media at twitter.com/lapublichealth, facebook.com/lapublichealth, instagram.com/lapublichealth and youtube.com/lapublichealth.




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