19 Cases Decline – 26 New Deaths and 825 New Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County

LOS ANGELES, Calif. Oct 19 – With the continued slowing of COVID-19 transmission countywide, COVID-19 case numbers among staff and residents at skilled nursing facilities have declined from 63 new cases during the week of September 5 to 49 new cases reported the week of October 3.

Of the 49 people who tested positive for COVID-19 at skilled nursing facilities; 18 new cases were among skilled nursing facility residents and 31 new cases were among skilled nursing facility staff. Fifty-seven percent of new cases the week ending October 3 at skilled nursing facilities are among staff/residents that are fully vaccinated.

Under a State and County Health Officer Order, healthcare workers, including staff at skilled nursing facilities, are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of September 30; those with an approved medical or religious exemption need to be tested once or twice weekly. The latest survey results received this week from skilled nursing facilities indicated that 94% of staff and 89% of residents are fully vaccinated. Skilled nursing facilities are subject to strict infection control precautions and are also required to verify the vaccine status of all workers and conduct routine testing of staff and residents.

Skilled nursing home residents, many of whom are immunocompromised, are eligible for a third dose of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine six months after they received their second dose in the series. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) continues to work with staff and residents at skilled nursing facilities to prioritize these most vulnerable residents for additional/booster doses.

Today, Public Health confirms 26 new deaths and 825 new cases of COVID-19. Of the 26 new deaths reported today, 10 people who passed away were over the age of 80, eight people who died were between the ages of 65 and 79, four people who died were between the ages of 50 and 64, and four people who died were between the ages of 30 and 49. To date, Public Health has identified 1,479,421 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 26,442 deaths.

There are 632 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized, and 29% of these people are in the ICU. Testing results are available for nearly 8,911,000 individuals with 15% of people testing positive. Today’s test positivity rate is 0.9%.

“To everyone mourning loved ones and friends who have passed away from COVID-19, you and your family are in my heart and mind,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “We continue working with nursing homes across L.A. County to ensure every eligible nursing home resident and staff is offered a third booster dose. Once FDA recommendations are finalized and eligibility for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson booster doses is determined by the CDC, those who are older and have underlying health conditions should be sure to get their boosters once eligible. Importantly, those who live or work with individuals at higher risk for severe disease should be sure to get fully vaccinated to reduce exposure risks.”

Vaccinations are widely available throughout L.A. County and are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status. Anyone 12 and older living or working in L.A. County can get vaccinated. Appointments are not needed at many sites and all Public Health vaccination sites where first, second, and third doses are available.

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