SANTA ANA, Calif. (CNS) – Orange County’s COVID-19 hospital stays rose again Thursday, while the county also recorded a dozen more deaths.
What you need to know
- OC COVID hospital stays rose from 190 Wednesday to 200 Thursday, with the ICU number rising from 41 to 42, according to the OC Health Care Agency
- Hospital admissions have started to rise in the past few days after declining steadily since the end of last month
- The number of fully vaccinated Orange County’s residents rose from 2,147,048 last Thursday to 2,162,820 this week
- There are 190,068 residents who received a dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine
Hospital stays rose from 190 Wednesday to 200 Thursday, with the number of critical care patients increasing from 41 to 42, according to the Orange County Health Care Agency. In the district, 175 patients were hospitalized on Monday.
The district had 23.2% of its intensive care beds and 71% of its ventilators on Thursday.
Hospital admissions have started to rise in the past few days after declining steadily since the end of last month.
“It definitely shows us once again that this is a seasonal virus,” said Dr. Jose Mayorga, General Manager of UCI Health Family Health Centers, told City News Service on Wednesday. “We are in this lull between summer just before late autumn and the winter season.”
Like other experts, Mayorga said he was expecting a wave this winter, but it is unknown how significant it will be.
“It probably won’t be as bad as last winter’s surge, but there are still some people to be vaccinated and our children under 12 don’t have that option,” Mayorga said.
Andrew Noymer, an epidemiologist and professor of population health and disease prevention at UC Irvine, told the City News Service on Wednesday that he was concerned about the surge in hospital admissions.
“I’m not pleased to see hospitalizations at 190 after I was 175,” said Noymer. “Whether or not this is a minor rash or something major is too early to tell. The percentage of positives still looks pretty good, so that’s good. But people are in the hospital and that’s not good. But we’re still under 200 and that’s good enough now. “
On October 16, the county’s new case rate per 100,000 vaccinated residents was 2.7, up from 3.1 on October 9. The rate among unvaccinated residents decreased from 14.6 per 100,000 to 13.7.
The number of fully vaccinated Orange County’s residents rose from 2,147,048 last Thursday to 2,162,820 this week.
That number includes an increase from 2,005,340 to 2,019,902 residents who received two-dose vaccines from Pfizer or Moderna. The number of residents who received Johnson & Johnson’s single-use vaccine increased from 141,708 to 142,918.
There are 190,068 residents who received a dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.
The leading suppliers of vaccines are OCHCA with 26.20%, CVS with 18.4%, Walgreens with 6.2%, Kaiser Permanente with 5.4%, UC Irvine Health with 2.7%; Walmart at 1.9%; Safeway, Vons and Pavilions at 1.2%; Families together from Orange County at 1.10% and several others under 1%.
The county’s weekly COVID case rate per 100,000 population, released on Tuesday, improved from 7 to 6.6 this week, while the test positive rate fell from 2.7% to 2.5%. The county’s health equity quartile positivity rate – which measures progress in low-income communities – decreased from 3% to 2.5%.
The county also reported 396 new infections and recorded 12 more deaths Thursday, bringing the cumulative total to 302,631 cases and 5,550 deaths since the pandemic began.
Of the deaths reported on Thursday, four occurred this month, bringing the death toll to 12 for October.
Five occurred in September, bringing the death toll to 154 last month. Another two occurred in August, bringing the death toll to 172 for that month. Another of the fatalities occurred in July.
In contrast, before the more contagious surge from Delta variants, the death toll was 29 in July, 19 in June, 26 in May, 46 in April, 199 in March, 615 in February, 1,585 in January – the deadliest month of the pandemic – and 976 for December, the next deadliest.
Most of those who died in September were unvaccinated, and the same trend applies to those who are hospitalized, said Dr. Regina Chinsio-Kwong, the district’s deputy health officer.
Chinsio-Kwong again encouraged residents to get the flu and COVID-19 vaccinations, stressing that it is safe to get both.
“The flu is just around the corner – technically it’s already there,” she said. “It’s between October and May and we’ll see an increase in November.”
Officials at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predict “a heavier flu season than last season” because “a lot of people haven’t been exposed to the flu or got vaccinated last season. The last thing you do.” want is to deal with it. ” COVID and the flu. “
Mayorga said it is likely that the CDC will approve the mix-and-match process of administering vaccines by the end of this week so that recipients of one company’s vaccine can get a booster dose of another company’s drug. Studies have shown that the potency of the Johnson & Johnson one-shot vaccine is increased 35 times with a Pfizer vaccine and 76 times with the Moderna vaccine.
What is unique is that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is based on older technology, similar to the flu shot, but the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines use the new mRNA technology. However, the idea of mixing and matching different vaccines is not new, said Mayorga.
“A great example of this has been around for a long time with the flu vaccine,” Mayorga said. “The flu vaccine has given this priority. Every year nobody really questions which flu vaccine they are getting. Usually you get what the doctor’s office offers. Mixing and combining is not uncommon.”
Mayorga said the human immune system is “very, very intelligent and complex” so the different approaches to fighting the coronavirus will improve one’s ability to fight off infections.
Mixing and matching the COVID-19 vaccines also shows how safe they are, Mayorga added.
But he said it was more important to promote vaccines in general, not just booster vaccinations.
“We know there is a good chance that people who have been vaccinated will go out and get a booster,” he said. “But what we really want to see is people who didn’t get a vaccine to get their first series. It is absolutely proven that if you are not vaccinated and you get sick, you have an 11 times higher risk of death. Why topic? yourself? “
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