Three additional cases of coronavirus COVID-19 have been confirmed in Los Angeles County since Friday, bringing the total number of COVID-19 cases diagnosed in the county to 16 as of Monday, according to the county Department of Public Health.
One case announced Saturday was a resident who recently returned from attending the AIPAC Conference in Washington, D.C., where there was a known exposure to a person who was positive for COVID-19.
Of the two new LA County cases Public Health officials confirmed Monday, one person had traveled through Japan.
The other case has an unidentified source of exposure, and Public Health officials have determined it to be the first possible case of community transmission in LA County.
Public Health is identifying persons who may have had close personal contact with these individuals, including any friends, family members or health care professionals, to assess and monitor them for signs and symptoms of illness has begun. All confirmed cases are isolated and close contacts are quarantined for 14 days from last exposure.
There are no known public exposure locations related to these cases at this time.
“This is our first case of community transmission in LA County and we will continue to see more cases of COVID-19,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, director of Public Health.
“As we continue to see more cases of COVID-19, it is important that everyone take common-sense precautions: stay home when ill, wash hands frequently, and plan ahead for possible social disruptions,” Ferrer said.
“Pregnant women, individuals with underlying health conditions, and older people should practice social distancing and avoid being in close contact with others who are ill. By working together, we can try to slow the transmission of novel coronavirus,” she added.
Public Health will continue to actively monitor this situation and provide updates to the public as needed.
Public Health continues to recommend that the public do the following to protect themselves and others from respiratory illnesses:
* Stay home when you are sick.
* Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
* Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unclean hands.
* Limit close contact, like kissing and sharing cups or utensils, with people who are sick.
* Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
* Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you do not have a tissue, use your sleeve (not your hands).
* Facemasks are most effective when used appropriately by health care workers and those directly caring for people who are sick and by people who are sick (source control).
* Get a flu immunization to prevent influenza if you have not done so this season.
Click here for the Public Health coronavirus COVID-19 FAQ.
Always check with trusted sources such as those below for the latest accurate information about novel coronavirus COVID-19:
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
Los Angeles County Department of Public Health
California Department of Public Health
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
World Health Organization
City of Santa Clarita
LA County residents may also call 2-1-1.