LOS ANGELES (CNS) – As COVID-19 infections continue to spread thanks to the highly contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus, Los Angeles County reported another slight increase in cases in qualified care facilities on Tuesday, despite high vaccination rates among residents and employees.
For the week that ended July 18, the district documented 33 new cases in care facilities – six among residents and 27 employees. This is an increase from a previous weekly average of 22 total new cases.
What you need to know
- LA County reported 2,293 COVID-19 infections and 20 deaths on Tuesday
- Despite high vaccination rates among residents and staff, the district reported a further slight increase in cases in qualified care facilities
- According to the state, 1,242 people in the county had been hospitalized for COVID on Wednesday morning, including 269 people in intensive care
- The moving average daily rate of people tested positive for the virus was 6.6% on Tuesday, up from 6.2% on Monday
Qualified nursing staff and residents were among the first to be considered for a COVID-19 vaccination. According to district officials, 86% of residents and 85% of employees are fully vaccinated. Masking and routine virus testing are also required.
District officials attributed the increase in cases to the delta variant and a “small number” of so-called breakthrough infections in vaccinated people.
“Residents in skilled care facilities are often medically vulnerable and at great risk of serious illness and death from COVID-19 during this pandemic,” the county public health director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement. Fortunately, because of their high COVID-19 vaccination rates and infection control measures in the facilities, we are not seeing a dramatic increase in COVID-19 cases among employees and residents of qualified care facilities, nor a significant increase in deaths.
“In order to ensure a continued high level of protection during this surge, employees who have not yet been vaccinated and residents should do so should residents at very high risk.”
The county reported an additional 2,293 COVID-19 infections on Tuesday, bringing the cumulative number from the entire pandemic to 1,307,970. Another 20 fatalities were reported, bringing the county a total of 24,704 fatalities.
The moving average daily rate of people tested positive for the virus was 6.6% on Tuesday, up from 6.2% on Monday. The average on July 2 was 1.3%.
California COVID-19 in Numbers:
🔹 Cases confirmed to date: 3,881,089
🔹 Note: The numbers may not represent real changes over the day as test results reporting may be delayed
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– CA Public Health (@CAPublicHealth) August 3, 2021
The county’s health authorities continued to call for vaccinations as the best defense against COVID-19 infections, which disproportionately affect unvaccinated people and end up in hospitals.
According to the state, 1,242 people in the county were hospitalized for COVID on Wednesday morning, including 269 people in intensive care. District officials noted that a month ago, on July 2, only 280 people were hospitalized for COVID-19.
Ferrer said last week that of all people hospitalized for COVID-19 in June, 92% were either completely unvaccinated or not completely vaccinated. In May it was 95%. For the first 10 days of July – the latest statistics available – the rate was 91%.
Ferrer also said 99.8% of COVID deaths in the county in the first half of the year occurred among unvaccinated people. From April 1 to June 30, the rate was 96%, a period when vaccines were more widely available.
While the pace of vaccinations has slowed significantly since the beginning of this year, Ferrer said the county has now seen a slight increase in the number of people receiving a first dose for two consecutive weeks. Between July 19 and 25, around 70,000 doses were administered in the county, around 7,500 more than the previous week.
Of the 10.3 million residents of the district, 60% have received at least one dose and 52% are fully vaccinated. About 1.3 million people under the age of 12 are still unsuitable for the vaccine.
Of the residents aged 16 and over, 72% have received at least one dose and 63% are fully vaccinated according to the latest figures from the district. The rates are significantly higher in older residents, with 89% of the district residents aged 65 and over receiving at least one dose and 79% fully vaccinated.
There are 772 county locations offering vaccinations this week, including pharmacies, clinics, community locations, and hospitals, and 312 locations where mobile teams offer vaccinations that focus on areas in particular need, more severely affected.
Nationwide cases are also increasing, mostly among unvaccinated populations, health officials said. The vast majority of new cases in California are unvaccinated, with the unvaccinated case rates being 600% higher than the vaccinated.