LOS ANGELES, CA, Nov 18 – The Delta variant emerged in late May, quickly dominated the scene and remains the predominate variant detected among our residents; accounts for 100% of cases sequenced.
Today, Public Health confirms 26 new deaths and 1,088 new cases of COVID-19. Of the 26 new deaths reported today, eight people who passed away were over the age of 80, 11 people who died were between the ages of 65 and 79, four people who died were between the ages of 50 and 64, two people who died were between the ages of 30 and 49, and one person who died was between the ages of 18 and 29. To date, Public Health has identified 1,515,324 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 26,949 deaths.
While the death rate among vaccinated people remains nearly flat, deaths among unvaccinated people are hovering in a range between 7 and 13 deaths per 100,000 people. On October 30, the risk of death was 70 times higher among unvaccinated people than among those who had been vaccinated.
There are 616 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized, 25% of whom are in the ICU. The County continues to see a steep rise in hospitalization rates among unvaccinated people, while rates among vaccinated people remain stable and low. Unvaccinated people now have 67 times the risk of hospitalizations of vaccinated people – this is a staggering difference.
The County’s daily average case rate, with a 3-day lag, is now almost 9 cases per 100,000 people, a small increase from last week’s 3-day-lagged case rate of 8 cases per 100,000. CDC’s estimation of the County’s weekly case rate is now 81 new cases per 100,000 residents, reflecting continued substantial transmission across the county. Unvaccinated people have 9 times the risk of infection compared to those vaccinated.
With transmission still at the substantial level in L.A. County, schools continue to work hard to remain as safe as possible for in-person learning. Public Health monitors case and close contact numbers among staff and students to stay aware of any new areas of concern.
Last week the County saw 500 student cases and more than 2,500 student close contacts. Among staff, there were about 100 cases and 100 close contacts. These case numbers represent continued declines in cases identified across all school districts: there was a 45% decline in student cases and a 47% decline in staff cases from the prior week. Test positivity remains at 0.2% among students and staff being tested, with 0.2% identified as close contacts.
“We extend our prayers for healing and comfort to everyone who has lost loved ones, friends or co-workers to this virus,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “As we continue to take important steps to protect ourselves for the holiday season, it is sensible to assume that living with the continued circulation of the virus requires we stay focused on the shared goal of protecting the most vulnerable by keeping transmission as low as possible. We will need to normalize vaccination, continue masking in higher risk settings, and to isolate and quarantine when appropriate.”
Anyone five years and older living or working in L.A. County can get vaccinated. Vaccinations are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status. Appointments are not needed at all Public Health vaccination sites where first, second, and third doses are available.