Los Angeles County will close all of its buildings to the public effective Monday, March 16, as a precautionary measure to help slow the spread of COVID-19, Board of Supervisors Chair Kathryn Barger announced Sunday.
The announcement comes as Gov. Gavin Newsom directed closure of California’s bars, brewpubs and wineries, and called on people over 65 and others at higher risk of serious complications from exposure to the virus to stay at home.
“We need to do all we can to protect the public and our employees in the midst of this expanding public health crisis,” Barger said. “Our departments will continue to provide essential services to our residents, but it is prudent to limit public access to our facilities at this time. We will continue to monitor the situation and urge the public to follow the guidance of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.”
(For the latest recommendations and answers to frequently asked questions, go to https://lacounty.gov/covid19/frequently-asked-questions/.)
“Our goal is to slow the transmission of COVID-19, but we can’t do it alone,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, director of LA County Public Health. “Each and every one of us, both businesses and residents, must do our part by practicing social distancing and taking common-sense infection control precautions.
“We urgently need to flatten the curve of COVID-19 in order to keep our hospitals and emergency rooms from becoming overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients,” Ferrer said. “Flattening the curve requires conscientious social distancing efforts by all our L.A. County residents during this time of crisis. Our collective efforts during this pandemic can literally save the lives of our loved ones and most vulnerable residents.”
County hospitals and clinics will remain open. Essential services from first-responders will continue, and many departments will continue to operate with modified services to minimize in-person contacts.
Los Angeles County libraries and museums are also closed, along with every school district in the county.
On Sunday, the Department of Public Health confirmed 16 new cases of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County, bringing the total to 69 cases, with 10 of the new cases believed to be due to community transmission.
Three of the cases have been confirmed at Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital in the Santa Clarita Valley since Friday.
Residents should go to https://lacounty.gov/covid19/ for up-to-date information on closures, and can also find information on each county department’s website.
Congregate Meal Sites Closed Effective Monday
All 180 congregate meal sites operated by the county and city of Los Angeles will close effective Monday, March 16.
To ensure older adults continue to receive critically needed meals, we will distribute packaged and frozen meals for older adults at our meal sites, with some locations starting Monday, and others starting later this week.
See here for a map with detailed plans for each meal site.
Older adults 65 and older must send a family member, friend or caregiver who is under the age of 65 to pick-up meals at these sites.
You may call your local meal provider to make arrangements. If you are not aware of who your meal provider is, you may call 1-800-510-2020 for assistance.
We are assessing ways to expand home-delivered meal services for seniors to reduce the need for meal distribution at our meal sites.
Community Centers Operated by County Will Close Monday
Effective, Monday, March 16th, the 23 Community and Senior Centers operated by the County will close to the public. Effective March 14th, the City of Los Angeles closed its 29 recreational senior centers and 16 multipurpose senior centers. Packaged and frozen meal distribution to seniors will occur at many of these County and City locations. See here for a map with detailed plans for each meal site.
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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
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
World Health Organization
City of Santa Clarita
Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital