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January 20
1993 - Hart High grad Dee Dee Myers (1979) becomes first female White House press secretary [story]
Dee Dee Myers


The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Friday confirmed 6,708 people hospitalized with COVID-19, with 20% currently in the ICU.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is experiencing a service interruption caused by an outage with Spectrum Service in the Los Angeles area.

While Spectrum construction crews are currently working to restore services at the fiber break, we anticipate that daily reports will be severely delayed. Therefore, daily cases and deaths will not be reported today and instead will be reported with tomorrow’s numbers.

The Santa Clarita Valley has now tallied 110 deaths, according to the latest Public Health dashboard which does not yet include the five deaths reported Thursday by Henry Mayo.

See more SCV and L.A. County info later in this report.

California Friday Snapshot

Statewide, as of Thursday, December 24, the California Department of Public Health confirmed a total of 2,042,290 COVID-19 cases (up 39,144), with 23,947 deaths from the disease (up 312) since the pandemic began.

There are 18,937 confirmed hospitalizations and 3,949 ICU hospitalizations in the state, continuing a very sharp upward trend.

Numbers do not represent true day-over-day change as these results include cases from prior to yesterday.

See more California information later in this report.

covid-19 roundup friday dec 25 california cases

Screencap from the Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering COVID-19 dashboard, showing COVID cases in the United States as of Friday afternoon, December 25, 2020.

Worldwide Infections Near 80 Million People; U.S. Deaths Exceed 330,000

Worldwide, 79,799,931 people have been infected by COVID-19 while 1,749,312 people have died of the virus as of 5:22 p.m. Friday Pacific Time, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

In the U.S., more than 18,755,426 Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19. New cases and hospitalizations continue at all-time record highs. The number of people in the U.S. who have died due to the virus has now surpassed 330,254.

With 4.25% of the world’s population (328.2 million) and more than 20% of the confirmed COVID-19 cases, the U.S. also continues to lead the world in deaths.

By comparison, Brazil (population 209.5 million) is No. 2 in deaths with 190,488, and No. 3 in cases with 7,448,560. India (population 1.353 billion) is No. 2 in cases, with 10,146,845 confirmed cases and 147,092 deaths as of Friday afternoon.

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital Friday Update

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital numbers remain unchanged. Henry Mayo reported 5 additional COVID-19 deaths on Thursday, bringing the total to date to 65, hospital spokesman Patrick Moody said.

As of Thursday, of the 14,709 people tested for COVID-19 at Henry Mayo to date, 2,195 tested positive, 17,592 were negative, 16 were pending, 85 patients were hospitalized in a dedicated unit receiving ICU-level care (an increase of five since Friday), and a total of 602 COVID-19 patients have been treated and discharged so far, Moody said.

Discrepancies in the testing numbers at the hospital are due to some patients being tested multiple times.

Henry Mayo releases complete statistics weekly, usually on Wednesdays, unless a new death occurs, Moody said.

Privacy laws prohibit the hospital from releasing the community of residence for patients who die there; that info is reported by the L.A. County Public Health COVID-19 dashboard, which is generally 48 hours behind.

covid-19 roundup monday dec 20

Santa Clarita Valley Friday Update

As of 8 p.m. Wednesday, December 23, the latest update to the L.A. County Public Health COVID-19 data dashboard, 110 deaths had been reported among Santa Clarita Valley residents since the pandemic began, this does not include the five deaths reported Thursday at Henry Mayo.

Of the 115 SCV residents who have died, 93 lived in Santa Clarita, 5 in Castaic, 3 in Stevenson Ranch (revised from Thursday), 4 in Acton, 1 in unincorporated Bouquet Canyon, 3 in unincorporated Canyon Country, and 1 in Val Verde, according to the data dashboard, plus five in communities not yet named.

Note: Due to the Los Angeles County Public Health Department’s severe delays, a breakdown of cases for the Santa Clarita Valley have not been updated.

covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23

Martin Reyes, RN for the Intensive Care Unit at LAC+USC Medical Center, receives a COVID-19 vaccination on Dec. 18 as part of L.A. County Health Services’ effort to vaccinate more than 10,000 frontline healthcare workers by the end of 2020.

L.A. County Vaccine Update: Who Gets it When

Initial efforts are aimed at vaccinating everyone in Phase 1A, Tier 1; these are our frontline healthcare workers and residents in long-term care facilities. Looking ahead, once we are done with vaccinating all groups in Tier 1, we will move to Tier 2 and Tier 3.

In Phase 1A, Tier 2, this group includes healthcare workers in immediate care facilities and home healthcare service, community health workers, public health field staff, and healthcare workers in primary care clinics, correctional facility clinics, and urgent care clinics.

In Phase 1A, Tier 3, this group includes healthcare workers in specialty clinics, laboratory workers, dental and other oral health clinics, and pharmacy staff who are not within the higher-tier settings.

As county health officials begin with the first set of vaccinations for all the Tiers within Phase 1A, we can begin to look at categories of individuals to receive vaccinations under Phase 1B and 1C. These are Phases adopted by the CDC to assist prioritization while there is a limited supply of the vaccine and we’re following their guidance.

Persons within Tier 1B are considered persons 75 years and older and frontline essential workers. These include firefighters, police officers and sheriff’s deputies, teachers and school staff, manufacturing workers, corrections workers, U.S. Postal Service workers, public transit and grocery store workers. A complete list will be published online.

Persons within Tier 1C are those who are 65 years or older and individuals 16 years and older with significant underlying health conditions that could create a serious health risk. This also includes additional essential workers not included in Tier 1B.

For more information about the county’s vaccination plans, visit www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.

While the news about cases, hospitalizations and deaths remains very alarming, there is significant hope on the horizon with the start of vaccinations in L.A. County. Public Health is collecting data from the 83 acute care hospitals, where frontline healthcare workers are receiving vaccinations, as well as from the teams who are going out to skilled nursing facilities to administer vaccines to the healthcare workers and residents.

covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23

As of Tuesday night, more than 38,800 frontline healthcare workers have been vaccinated at acute care hospitals with the Pfizer vaccine. Our first two shipments of the Pfizer vaccine include 131,600 doses. We also received our first shipments of the Moderna vaccine and are distributing the 116,600 doses this week at skilled nursing facilities and to EMTs and firefighters.

Public Health created a COVID-19 vaccine management dashboard that will be updated weekly to list how many vaccine allocations have been received and where they have been distributed. This dashboard will also provide a running tally of how many doses have been administered. Currently, this dashboard shows the vaccines being administered within Phase 1a where frontline healthcare and public health workers in hospitals, healthcare facilities, clinics, labs, and field settings are vaccinated along with staff and residents at long-term care facilities and frontline EMTs and paramedics.

For more information, visit www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.

More L.A. County Demographics: Race/Ethnicity

As the COVID-19 pandemic worsens, the gaps between race and ethnicity groups that the county made progress closing in September continue to widen, particularly for Latino/Latinx residents compared to other groups, though all groups are experiencing increases.

Latino/Latinx residents are now seeing a 7-day cumulative rate of nearly 650 new cases per 100,000 people. This is more than two times that of African American/Black residents, the group with the second-highest case rate of about 270 new cases per 100,000 people, and almost three times the rate experienced by white residents (250 new cases per 100,000 people) and Asian residents (172 new cases per 100,000 people).

Latino/Latinx, African American/Black, and Asian residents are also experiencing an alarming increase in deaths. The death rate among Latino/Latinx residents has increased from 1.5 deaths per 100,000 people to 4.5 deaths per 100,000 people. The death rate for African American/Black residents has increased from less than 1 death per 100,000 people to 3 deaths per 100,000 people. The death rate among Asian residents has increased from 0.5 deaths per 100,000 people to 3 deaths per 100,000 people.

Public Health continues to see a high mortality rate among people living in areas with the highest levels of poverty, with four times the death rate compared to people living in the lowest levels of poverty.

Throughout the pandemic, the life and death consequences of racism and poverty have played out in devastating ways and they continue to do so. The widening gaps are a stark reminder that many of our essential workers are Black and brown, and many are not able to telework or stay home; many work at jobs with low wages, and live in under-resourced neighborhoods.

During the surge, all our essential workers are taking on increased risks at their jobs because community transmission rates are high. The only way to reduce their risk is for every business to fully implement the safety modifications required by the Health Officer Order; this includes providing appropriate PPE and infection control. Violations at workplaces can be reported anonymously at 888-700-9995.

Every resident needs to protect our essential workers by playing by rules. This means always wear a face covering and keep distance from others, no crowding, frequent handwashing, and limiting all non-essential activities.

Test Positive? Isolate, Contact Trace

It is important to isolate if you tested positive for COVID-19 for 10 days and to self-quarantine for 10 days if you have come in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19. L.A. County has capacity to support isolation and quarantine for those who are positive and those who are close contacts.

If you are positive for COVID-19 and need help figuring out how to best stay away from others for the 10 days, please answer the call when Public Health contacts you or call Public Health at 833-540-0473.

L.A. County Public Health’s Reopening Protocols, COVID-19 Surveillance Interactive Dashboard, Roadmap to Recovery, Recovery Dashboard, and additional things you can do to protect yourself, your family and your community are on the Public Health website, www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.

Vaccinate All 58
The COVID-19 shipment of the COVID-19 vaccine has arrived in California, and additional shipments will continue to arrive throughout this week. The first doses are being administered to health care workers and residents of long-term care facilities. The state is working closely with community partners and stakeholders to help ensure the vaccine is distributed and administered equitably across California.

For more information, visit the CDPH COVID-19 Vaccine webpage and Vaccinate All 58.

covid-19 roundup friday dec 25 california cases

California Regional Stay Home Order
Due to high rates of COVID-19 hospitalizations impacting the health care system, California is under a Limited Stay at Home Order. The order applies to all counties that are currently under the Regional Stay at Home Order and those in Tier One (Purple) of the Blueprint for a Safer Economy.

The Limited Stay at Home Order will expire after the Regional Stay Home Order has been terminated in all regions of the state.

Based on ICU data, four regions, San Joaquin Valley, Southern California, Greater Sacramento and the Bay Area are under the Regional Stay at Home Order as of Friday, Dec. 25.

Regions must remain under the Regional Stay at Home Order for at least three weeks and will be eligible to exit the order and return to the Blueprint for a Safer Economy only if ICU capacity projections for the following month are above or equal to 15%.

Current available ICU capacity by region as of Thursday:

* Bay Area: 9.24%

* Greater Sacramento Region: 15.3%

* Northern California: 27.5%

* San Joaquin Valley: 0.0%

* Southern California: 0.0%

covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23 2020

San Joaquin Valley and Southern California will be eligible to exit from the order and return to the Blueprint for a Safer Economy on December 28 if ICU capacity projections for the following month are above or equal to 15%. Greater Sacramento may exit on January 1 and the Bay Area on January 8 if both achieve the same capacity projections.

The state continues to support hospital systems and congregate care facilities across the state as ICU capacity continues to drop. The state is providing staff assistance, personal protective gear, durable medical equipment and supplies, and infection prevention technical assistance.

On Sunday, December 13, CDPH implemented a temporary waiver of nurse-to-patient ratios for intensive care units, step-down units, emergency medical services and medical and surgical units. In addition, more than 300 additional medical staff has been deployed across the state, with more expected before the end of the month.

Read the full Regional Stay Home Order and Supplement to the Order, and Frequently Asked Questions.

covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23 2020

California Blueprint for a Safer Economy

Governor Gavin Newsom’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy imposes risk-based criteria on tightening and loosening COVID-19 allowable activities and expands the length of time between changes to assess how any movement affects the trajectory of the disease.

Californians can go to covid19.ca.gov to find out where their county falls and what activities are allowable in each county.

California Testing
More than 85 community testing sites offer free, confidential testing: Find a COVID-19 Testing Site.

The testing turnaround dashboard reports how long California patients are waiting for COVID-19 test results. California has worked to reduce testing turnaround times in recent weeks to help curb the spread of the virus.

During the week of December 6 to December 12, the average time patients waited for test results was 1.8 days. During this same time period, 46% of patients received test results in one day and 75% received them within two days. The testing turnaround time dashboard (PDF) is updated weekly.

All four tiers in the Testing Prioritization Guidance originally dated July 14, 2020, have equal priority for testing.

California Demographics

Overall, for adults 18 and older, Latinos, African Americans, and Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders are dying at disproportionately higher levels.

The proportion of COVID-19 deaths in African Americans is more than one-and-a-half times their population representation across all adult age categories. For Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, overall numbers are low but almost double between the proportion of COVID-19 deaths and their population representation.

More males are dying from COVID-19 than females, in line with national trends.

More information is available at COVID-19 Race and Ethnicity Data.

coronavirus covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23 2020

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C)

Each week, the California Department of Public Health updates the number of cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) reported in the state.

As of December 21, 157 cases of MIS-C have been reported statewide, an increase of 5 over the previous week. To protect patient confidentiality in counties with fewer than 11 cases, we are not providing total counts at this time.

MIS-C is a rare inflammatory condition associated with COVID-19 that can damage multiple organ systems. MIS-C can require hospitalization and be life-threatening. Parents should be aware of the signs and symptoms of MIS-C including fever that does not go away, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, neck pain, rash, bloodshot eyes, or feeling tired. Contact your child’s doctor immediately if your child has these symptoms. Early diagnosis and treatment of patients are critical to preventing long-term complications.

covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23 2020

Protect Yourself and Your Family

California is experiencing the fastest increase in cases we have seen yet – faster than what we experienced at the outset of the pandemic and this summer. If COVID-19 continues to spread at this rate, it could quickly overwhelm our health care system and lead to catastrophic outcomes.

Protect yourself, family, friends, and community by following these prevention measures:

* Staying home except for essential needs/activities following local and state public health guidelines when patronizing approved businesses. To the extent that sectors are re-opened, Californians may leave their homes to work at, patronize, or otherwise engage with those businesses, establishments or activities.

* Following the limited Stay at Home Order that requires all non-essential work and activities to stop between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. in counties in the purple tier. The order took effect at 10 p.m. Saturday, November 21, and will remain in effect until 5 a.m. December 21.

* Staying close to home, avoiding non-essential travel, and practicing self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival if you leave the state.

* Keeping gatherings small, short, and outdoors and limiting them to those who live in your household.

* Wearing a cloth face mask when out in public

* Washing hands with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds

* Avoiding touching eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands

* Covering a cough or sneeze with your sleeve or disposable tissue. Wash your hands afterward

* Avoiding close contact with people who are sick

* Staying away from work, school, or other people if you become sick with respiratory symptoms like fever and cough

* Following guidance from public health officials

What to Do if You Think You’re Sick

Call ahead: If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough or shortness of breath), call your health care provider before seeking medical care so that appropriate precautions can be taken. More than 85 community testing sites also offer free, confidential testing: Find a COVID-19 Testing Site.

It’s important if someone thinks they could be positive for COVID-19 and are awaiting testing results to stay at home and act as if they are positive. This means self-isolating for 10 days and 72 hours after symptoms and fever subside.

If a person tests positive for COVID-19, they should plan on receiving a call from a public health specialist to discuss how to protect themselves and others, find out where they may have been, and who they were in close contact with while infectious.

covid-19 roundup wednesday dec 23 2020

California COVID-19 Data and Tools

A wide range of data and analysis guides California’s response to COVID-19. The state is making the data and its analytical tools available to researchers, scientists and the public at covid19.ca.gov.

* The Statewide COVID-19 Dashboard

* The California COVID-19 Assessment Tool (CalCAT)

* State Cases and Deaths Associated with COVID-19 by Age Group

* COVID-19 Race & Ethnicity Data

* COVID-19 Hospital Data and Case Statistics

* View additional datasets at the California Open Data Portal (including Testing Data, PPE Logistics Data, Hospital Data, Homeless Impact and more)

Consolidated guidance is available on the California Department of Public Health’s Guidance webpage.

* * * * *

Always check with trusted sources for the latest accurate information about novel coronavirus (COVID-19):

* Los Angeles County Department of Public Health

* California Department of Public Health

* Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

* Spanish

* World Health Organization

* Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 Dashboard

L.A. County residents can also call 2-1-1.

* * * * *

Courthouse News Reporter Nathan Solis contributed to this report.

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