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January 26
1990 - "Duplicates" premieres at L.A. Phil; concerto by CalArts Music School dean Mel Powell wins Pulitzer Prize [story]
Mel Powell

Los Angeles County Public Health officials on Wednesday confirmed 57 new deaths and 411 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, as the county prepares to expand vaccination eligibility to residents 16 and older on Thursday.

To date, Public Health has identified 1,226,964 positive cases of COVID-19 and a total of 23,553 deaths countywide due to the disease, 27,515 of those cases and 298 of the fatalities in the SCV since the pandemic began.

“To everyone who has lost a loved one to COVID-19, we are deeply sorry for your loss, and we wish you peace and comfort in this difficult time,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, L.A. County Director of Public Health, in her daily update.

There are 493 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized, 26% of them in the ICU. Older residents have been hospitalized at higher rates than younger residents at all stages of the pandemic, with the highest rates among residents older than 80 years of age.

But now, officials said, the rate of hospitalizations for 80+ residents has dropped by 96%, due to the decrease of hospitalization rates for people of all ages, and the large number of older people who are now vaccinated.

Testing results are available for more than 6,235,000 individuals with 18% of people testing positive. Wednesday’s daily test positivity rate is 1.2%.

Variants Update

Public Health continues to identify variant cases in Los Angeles County. The two most commonly circulating variants of concern in L.A. County have been the UK (B.1.1.7) and California (B.1.427/429) variants. Of the 40 specimens analyzed by the L.A. County Public Health Laboratory in the past week, 55% were the UK variant and 28% were the California variant.

The Public Health Laboratory also detected the three Brazil (P.1) variants last week. Although these are the first confirmed Brazil variant cases in L.A. County, it is likely there are other undetected cases of this variant circulating in our region.

See more L.A. County information and vaccine/vaccination updates later in this report.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14 2021 california cases

California Wednesday Snapshot

Statewide, as of Tuesday, April 13, California Department of Public Health officials confirmed 3,606,882 COVID-19 cases (up 2,487) with 59,372 deaths from the disease (up 114) since the pandemic began.

As of April 13, local health departments have reported 104,960 confirmed positive cases in healthcare workers and 449 deaths statewide.

There are 1,884 people in hospitals statewide undergoing treatment for COVID-19, with 451 people in the ICU, a slight increase.

There have been 56,837,538 tests conducted in California, an increase of 115,110 during the prior 24-hour reporting period.

The 7-day test positivity rate is 1.5%, a slight increase.

As of April 14, providers have reported administering a total of 23,760,123 vaccine doses statewide.

The CDC reports that 29,888,030 doses have been delivered to entities within the state.

Numbers do not represent true day-to-day change as reporting may be delayed.

K-12 Schools Outlook for the 2021-22 Academic Year

CDPH posted an Outlook for the 2021-22 Academic Year on Monday to help K-12 schools prepare for fully reopening in-person instruction.

The outlook provides an overview of steps taken in the last year, including lessons learned during the early months of the pandemic, and highlights the key steps, including testing and vaccines, that will help schools plan and prepare for in-person instruction this fall.

The CDPH has also updated the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy reopening framework allowing additional activities to resume with modifications to reduce risk.

The updates include gatherings, private events or meetings such as receptions or conferences, and indoor seated live events and performances. The state updates will take effect Thursday, April 15.

See more California info later in this report.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14 2021

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 Wednesday afternoon, April 14, 2021.

Global Deaths Near 3 Million People

Worldwide, 137,874,646 people have been infected by COVID-19 while 2,965,750 people have died of the virus since the pandemic began, as of 3:21 p.m. Wednesday Pacific Time, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

In the U.S. — where, according to CDC officials, a fourth wave of COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths is mounting as COVID-19 cases rise in more than 30 states — more than 31,413,970 Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19. The number of people in the U.S. who have died due to the virus has now surpassed 564,280.

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, India (population 1.353 billion) is No. 2 in cases with 13,873,825 confirmed infections and No. 4 in deaths with 172,085, behind No. 3 Mexico’s 210,294 deaths. Brazil (population 209.5 million) is No. 3 in cases with 13,599,994 and No. 2 in deaths with 361,884 — almost half of the U.S. total — as of Wednesday afternoon.

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital Wednesday Update

As of Wednesday, there were no cases pending, six patients were hospitalized in a dedicated COVID-19 unit, and a total of 1,205 patients had been treated and discharged since the pandemic began, according to Patrick Moody, spokesman for Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital.

There were no additional deaths, keeping the total deaths at 147 people to date. The most recent death was March 21. In 2020, 74 people died at the hospital of COVID-19. In 2021, the number stands at 73.

Privacy laws prohibit Henry Mayo from releasing the community of residence for patients who die at the hospital; residence info is reported by the L.A. County Public Health COVID-19 dashboard.

hospital expansion

The Santa Clarita City Council on April 13, 2021, approved new construction and upgrades at Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital. | Rendering courtesy City of Santa Clarita.

Santa Clarita Valley Wednesday Update

As of 6 p.m. Monday, the L.A. County Public Health COVID-19 dashboard recorded 298 deaths among Santa Clarita Valley residents since the pandemic began.

The following is the community breakdown of the 298 SCV residents who have died, according to the dashboard:

* 257 lived in Santa Clarita

* 17 in Castaic

* 6 in Acton

* 5 in Stevenson Ranch

* 3 in Agua Dulce

* 3 in unincorporated Canyon Country

* 1 in Valencia

* 1 in unincorporated Bouquet Canyon

* 1 in Elizabeth Lake

* 1 in Lake Hughes

* 1 in Newhall

* 1 in unincorporated Saugus/Canyon Country

* 1 in Val Verde

covid-19 roundup monday april 12

Of the 27,515 confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to Public Health for the SCV to date, the community breakdown is as follows:

* City of Santa Clarita: 20,143

* Castaic: 3,706 (incl. Pitchess Detention Center & North County Correctional Facility*)

* Stevenson Ranch: 1,129

* Canyon Country (unincorporated portion): 835

* Acton: 466

* Val Verde: 335

* Agua Dulce: 277

* Valencia (unincorporated portion west of I-5): 191

* Saugus (unincorporated portion): 128

* Elizabeth Lake: 76

* Newhall (Unincorporated portion): 68

* Bouquet Canyon: 47

* Lake Hughes: 42

* Saugus/Canyon Country: 39

* Sand Canyon: 17

* San Francisquito/Bouquet Canyon: 15

* Placerita Canyon: 1

*Note: The county is unable to break out separate numbers for Castaic and PDC/NCCF because the county uses geotagging software that cannot be changed at this time, according to officials. Click here for the LASD COVID-19 dashboard.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14 2021

L.A. County Demographics — Cases by Age Group (excluding Long Beach and Pasadena)

* 0 to 4: 28991

* 5 to 11: 55328

* 12 to 17: 69406

* 18 to 29: 275341

* 30 to 49: 386769

* 50 to 64: 224677

* 65 to 79: 89475

* over 80: 32581

* Under Investigation 689

L.A. County Demographics — Deaths (excluding Long Beach and Pasadena)

Of the 57 new deaths reported today, 26 people who died were over the age of 80, 16 people who died were between the ages of 65 and 79, 10 people who died were between the ages of 50 and 64, and three people who died were between the ages of 30 and 49. Two deaths were reported by the City of Long Beach.

covid-19 roundup wednesday april 14 2021

Underlying Health Conditions: Heart Disease, Diabetes, Obesity

From August 2020 through January 2021, 87% of people hospitalized with COVID-19 had at least one underlying health condition, or comorbidity. The most common comorbidity was cardiovascular disease, which includes high blood pressure, and was noted for 66% of the people hospitalized for COVID-19. Forty-two percent of hospitalized people had diabetes, and 36% had obesity.

Underlying conditions are strongly associated with deaths due to COVID-19. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 85% of people who died as a result of COVID-19 infection had an underlying condition. The most common condition was high blood pressure or hypertension, which was an underlying condition for 52% of those who died. Forty-one percent of those who died had diabetes, 26% had cardiovascular disease other than hypertension, 21% had neurologic disease, and 16% had chronic renal disease.

People who live with chronic illnesses suffer the worst outcomes of COVID-19 infection. These numbers should remind us of the importance of ensuring equitable access to preventive healthcare and the other resources that reduce people’s vulnerability to this virus.

If you have serious underlying health conditions, talk with your healthcare provider if you have concerns about getting vaccinated. Because chronic diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity so dramatically increase the risk of getting severely ill or dying with COVID-19 infection, vaccination is particularly important for people living with these conditions.

Healthcare Worker Update: Lowest Numbers Yet

Since January 2021, when healthcare workers began to be vaccinated, their cases declined sharply. During the last week of December, there were more than 1,900 new cases of COVID-19 among healthcare workers. In the past three weeks, there have been 50 or fewer new cases across the entire county each week.

These are the lowest numbers of weekly cases among healthcare workers seen in this pandemic.

Tragically, 256 healthcare workers have passed away from COVID-19, and we mourn the loss of these heroes. At the peak of the surge, the week of January 3, 2021, 24 healthcare workers died. In the past month, six healthcare workers have died from COVID-19. Public Health officials say they are pleased to see these numbers decreasing, although even one death due to COVID-19 is too many.

New Guidance for Events, Gatherings

Later Wednesday, Public Health officials will release several protocols to help the people of Los Angeles begin to enjoy additional opportunities for shared activities.

These include guidance on reopening indoor seated live events and performances; guidance on safety modifications required for private events, meetings, and conferences; and relaxed rules for informal gatherings.

The protocols provide guidance on distancing, masking, infection control, and capacity requirements needed to minimize risk while gathering or attending events with those not members of our household.

“We all must continue to take actions that reduce transmission, as there are still many people who may not yet be vaccinated who may become very seriously ill if they become infected with COVID-19,” Ferrer said.

“As we start to reopen and attend live events and gatherings that form such a big part of this county’s cultural fabric, please be aware of the steps you can take to be safe at large group gatherings: wearing a mask securely and fully covering your mouth and nose helps protect you and others, and wearing two masks is even better than one,” she said.

“If you see people not wearing masks, keep your distance from them as best you can. Avoid crowded areas at concession stands or in concourses; come back when lines are short,” Ferrer said. “Eat in areas where you can be sure to keep your distance from others. To the best of your ability, cheer, sing, and chant in your normal voice. And as always, wash or sanitize your hands, especially before eating or drinking. As more and more L.A. County residents are vaccinated, we are heading in the right direction.”

covid-19 roundup weds april 14 2021

L.A. County Vaccine/Vaccinations Update

More than 5,100,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to people across Los Angeles County. Of these, 3,300,000 were first doses and more than 1,800,000 were second doses.

On Thursday, April 15, COVID-19 vaccines will become available to any resident in L.A. County 16 and older. The MyTurn website will be updated on Wednesday to reflect the change in eligibility; residents 16 and older can begin scheduling appointments for Thursday and later starting on Wednesday.

Please note, youth 16 and 17 can only receive the Pfizer vaccine and need to sign up at a site that offers this vaccine.

Providers vaccinating residents in hard-hit communities have had the flexibility to vaccinate family members of eligible residents for the past couple of weeks and will continue with these efforts.

Vaccinations Demographics

Throughout the pandemic, Black/African American residents and Latino/Latinx residents have seen disproportionately high numbers of COVID-19 cases, deaths, and hospitalizations. In vaccinating county residents, the county made it a priority to ensure that people who are living in hard-hit communities have access to the vaccine.

Public Health watched closely the rates of vaccination across race and ethnicity groups, and while gaps still persist, they are closing.

Among people who are 65 and older, a group that has been eligible to be vaccinated for several months, 72% have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Among those where race/ethnicity information is known, Asian and white seniors have the highest rate of vaccination, each at 64% as of April 9. American Indian/Alaska Native residents in this age group have a vaccination rate of 60%. Latinx seniors have a vaccination rate of 57%, and Black residents 65 and older have a vaccination rate of 51%.

Black residents have seen the highest increase in vaccinations at 31%. Latinx residents have seen a 26% increase in vaccinations, and American Indian and Alaska Native residents have seen a 24% increase in vaccinations.

Public Health officials say they are relieved to see the groups with the lowest vaccination rates seeing the largest increases in vaccination since March, and that they will remain focused on the equitable distribution of vaccinations as eligibility opens up to everyone who is age 16 and older.

covid-19 roundup weds april 142021

Where to Get Vaccinated

While COVID-19 vaccine supply remains very limited, Public Health continues to build an extensive network with pharmacies, federally qualified health centers, hospitals, health clinics, and community vaccination sites, including these large-capacity sites:

* Dodger Stadium (operated by the city of Los Angeles)

* Six Flags Magic Mountain, 26101 Magic Mountain Pkwy, Valencia 91355

* California State University, Northridge, 18111 Nordhoff St, Northridge 91330

* Pomona Fairplex, 1101 W McKinley Ave, Pomona 91768

* The Forum, 3900 W Manchester Blvd, Inglewood 90305

* L.A. County Office of Education, 12830 Columbia Way, Downey 90242

* California State University, Los Angeles, 5151 State University Drive, Los Angeles 90032 (operated by FEMA)

The Six Flags Magic Mountain supersite will close after April 18, and be replaced the following day by supersites at College of the Canyons in Valencia and Palmdale Oasis Park Recreation Center in the Antelope Valley. Read more about that here.

In total, of the 709 vaccination sites across the county this week, the most vaccination sites the county has mobilized to date, 266 sites are in the hardest-hit communities. These are communities with high case rates and low vaccination rates. Mobile vaccine teams will continue administering vaccines this week, with a priority of vaccinating residents 65 and older, including residents in hard-hit communities that are homebound or have limited mobility.

There are 95 mobile vaccination teams scheduled to administer vaccinations this week at senior housing sites, senior centers, faith-based organizations, and community-based organizations. These mobile sites are critical to our effort to vaccinate hard-hit communities with either lower vaccination rates or lack of access.

In the coming weeks, an additional 237 mobile vaccination sites are scheduled throughout L.A. County.

For more information about who is eligible for COVID-19 vaccine in L.A. County, how to make an appointment if it is your turn, what verifications you will need to show at your vaccination appointment, and much more, visit www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) and www.VacunateLosAngeles.com (Spanish).

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.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14

All counties are now under the rules and framework of the Blueprint for a Safer Economy and color-coded tiers that indicate which activities and businesses are open based on local case rates and test positivity.

The California Department of Public Health modified Blueprint thresholds on March 12 after the state successfully met its first vaccine equity milestone of 2 million administered vaccine doses in some of the state’s hardest-hit communities.

Blueprint tiers are updated weekly on Tuesdays. The Blueprint summary as of April 13:

* 0 counties are currently in the Purple (widespread) Tier

* 22 counties are currently in the Red (substantial) Tier

* 33 counties are currently in the Orange (moderate) Tier (including Los Angeles County)

* 3 counties are in the Yellow (minimal) Tier

As of April 1, the state’s reopening framework allowed outdoor ballparks, stadiums, and theme parks to open with significantly reduced capacity, mandatory masking, and other public health precautions.

Find the status of activities in specific counties.

Increased Transparency and Updated School Reopening Maps

The school reopening maps on the Safe Schools Hub have been updated with self-reported data from school districts, charter schools, and private schools throughout the state. Schools are required to submit this data on the second and fourth Monday of each month.

This is the first update with data pursuant to AB 86 and includes:

School-Level Data: Reopening status can be searched for and viewed not only on a district-wide basis, but also a school-by-school basis.

Enrollment Data: The maps display data not only on the instructional modes offered, but also on the number of students enrolled in different instructional modes: full-time in-person, hybrid, and distance learning.

Note: The self-reported data may include some gaps in data and errors. The maps will be routinely updated to reflect new data, and the state will continue to improve data quality and visualizations.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14

Vaccinate All 58 Eligibility Update

With the supply of vaccines expected to significantly increase in the coming weeks, the state is expanding vaccine eligibility to more Californians.

As of April 1, people aged 50+ statewide are eligible to make an appointment to be vaccinated, and individuals 16+ will be eligible to make an appointment starting April 15.

To sign up for a notification when you’re eligible for a vaccine, visit myturn.ca.gov.

For more information on the vaccine effort, visit Vaccinate All 58.

Tracking Variants

Multiple variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 have been identified globally during the COVID-19 pandemic.

These genetic mutations are expected, and some emerge and then disappear, while others persist or become common. Most variants do not have a meaningful impact.

Public health becomes concerned about a variant when it affects COVID-19 transmission, severity, testing, treatment, or vaccine effectiveness.

Get more information here on the variants CDPH is currently monitoring.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14 2021

‘Safe Schools for All’ Plan
Governor Newsom launched the Safe Schools for All Hub as a one-stop-shop for information about safe in-person instruction.

For more information on the transparency, accountability, and assistance measures related to California’s Safe Schools for All plan, visit the hub.

Travel Advisory Updated

California Public Health California updated its travel advisory on April 2, removing the previous recommendation that Californians not travel more than 120 miles from ones’ place of residence.

Postponing travel and staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others from COVID-19, and Californians should continue to avoid non-essential travel outside of the state.

Non-essential travelers from other states or countries are strongly discouraged from entering California and should follow CDC travel guidance related to testing and self-quarantine.

Non-essential travelers from other states or countries are strongly discouraged from entering California and should adhere to the state’s self-quarantine procedures for 10 days.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14

California Demographics: Health Equity Dashboard

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted existing inequities in health that are the result of structural racism and poverty, and the disproportionate prevalence of underlying conditions such as asthma and heart disease among Latinos and African Americans.

As part of its commitment to reduce health inequities and ensure the best outcomes for all Californians, the state has launched a Health Equity Dashboard on www.covid19.ca.gov/equity/ that tracks California’s health equity measure and data by race and ethnicity, age group, and sexual orientation/gender identity.

covid-19 cases roundup weds april 14 2021

California Testing & Turnaround Time
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 March 28 to April 3, the average time patients waited for test results was just under one day. During this same time period, 84% of patients received test results in one day and 98% 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.

coronavirus covid-19 roundup monday april 12 2021

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 April 12, 470 448 cases of MIS-C have been reported statewide, up from 448 cases last week. To protect patient confidentiality in counties with fewer than 11 cases, CDPH officials 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.

Protect Yourself and Your Family: Your Actions Save Lives

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.

* Avoiding non-essential travel, and practicing self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival if you leave the state.

* Keeping interactions limited to people 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.

* Getting tested if you believe you’ve been exposed. Free, confidential testing is available statewide.

* Getting vaccinated when it’s your turn.

* Adding your phone to the fight by signing up for COVID-19 exposure notifications from CA Notify.

* Answering the call if a contact tracer from the CA COVID Team or local health department tries to connect.

* Following guidance from public health officials.

covid-19 roundup weds april 14 2021

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 healthcare provider before seeking medical care so that appropriate precautions can be taken.

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.

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.

* * * * *

Postscript from the author: After aggregating COVID-related information in more than 125 stories like this since March 2020, this is my last roundup before retiring. I regret it will not be the last COVID-19 roundup the SCVNews.com crew will h
ave to do. Happy trails to all.

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SCV NewsBreak
Thursday, Jan 26, 2023
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The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved a motion today by Supervisor Kathryn Barger and co-authored by Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell that establishes a $45M countywide relief fund for small property owners. The new rent relief program will benefit mom-and-pop property owners hardest hit by non-payment of rent.
Board of Supes to Bring $45M in Relief for Small Property Owners
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health today confirmed 20 new deaths throughout L.A. County, 919 new cases countywide and 118 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Tuesday COVID Roundup: 20 New COVID Deaths, 919 New Cases in County
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