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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 Department of Public Health officials confirmed Wednesday 39 new deaths and 40,452 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, with 54,762 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley, and Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital reporting an additional COVID related death.

More information from Henry Mayo below.

According to the latest Public Health data, getting vaccinated against COVID-19 is still the best way to prevent serious illness and death.

Today, Public Health confirmed 39 additional deaths and 40,452 new cases of COVID-19. Of the 39 new deaths reported today, one was between the ages of 30-49, seven people were between the ages of 50 and 64, 12 were between the ages of 65-79, and 16 were over the age of 80 years old. Of the 39 newly reported deaths, 33 had underlying conditions. To date, the total number of deaths in L.A. County is 27,850.

Public Health has identified a total 2,086,581 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County. Today’s positivity rate is 20.4%.

There are 3,912 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized. Testing results are available for more than 10,442,400 individuals, with 18% of people testing positive.

To keep workplaces and schools open, residents and workers are asked to:

Adhere to masking requirements when indoors or at crowded outdoor spaces, regardless of vaccination status.

Remain home when sick, isolate if positive and quarantine when a close contact.

Residents are legally required to be isolated if they have a positive COVID test result and vaccinated close contacts with symptoms and unvaccinated close contacts need to be quarantined.

For updated isolation and quarantine guidance, please visit www.publichealth.lacounty.gov

L.A. Sees Daily Death Total Increase 

As the Omicron variant continues to spread across the county, today Public Health is reporting a total of 39 deaths, the highest number of new deaths since September 22nd when Public Health reported 41 new deaths. Of the 36 deaths for which Public Health has full data, 78% were in among those 65 years of age and older.  All deaths occurred in January, likely reflecting an increase in deaths associated with the higher December case and hospitalization numbers.

As more students and staff returned to in-person learning this week, amid the surge in cases, routine testing at schools across many districts identified thousands of students and staff infected with COVID-19. For the week of January 3rd through January 9th, 547,466 tests were administered across school districts in the County, with most testing occurring for LAUSD students and staff. Last week, 80,424 positive cases were identified, including 68,560 cases among LAUSD staff and students, resulting in a test positivity rate of 14.6%.  A total of three outbreaks among youth sports teams were also identified last week, with an additional 26 school related outbreaks still being monitored.

In response to this latest surge, Public Health is working closely with LACOE and school districts to implement additional layers of protection for staff and students.  This includes delivering over 1.4 million test kits, which were provided by the state, to 84 school districts and charter schools, as well as, expanding contracted testing capacity at parochial and private schools.  Additionally, exposure management and testing resources have been aligned to support safely allowing as many students and staff to remain in school during the surge.

“Our hearts remain with those families experiencing the sorrow of losing a loved one to COVID,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director of Public Health. “As schools reopen countywide, we are seeing a high number of students and staff testing positive reflecting the explosive rate of community spread.  Given the importance of ensuring that our schools remain safe for in-person learning, layering in protections is a most sensible approach.  Masking indoors and in crowded outdoor spaces reduces transmission opportunities; testing those who are close contacts of infected students or school staff can quickly identify others who may now be infected, and limit continued spread; and, making it easy for those eligible to get their booster doses helps ensure that immune systems are best primed to repel the virus. We are grateful for the hard work of school superintendents, labor partners and staff, parents and students to implement strategies that promote safety at schools.”

L.A. Vaccine Infomation

COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and are recommended for everyone 5 years old and older to help protect against COVID-19. 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 and many community sites where first, second, and third doses are available.

To keep workplaces and schools open, residents and workers are asked to:

– Get tested to help reduce the spread, especially if you traveled for the holidays, have had a possible exposure, or have symptoms, or are gathering with people not in your household

– Adhere to masking requirements when indoors or at crowded outdoor spaces, regardless of vaccination status

– Residents are legally required to be isolated if they have a positive COVID test result and vaccinated close contacts with symptoms and unvaccinated close contacts need to be quarantined.

For information on where you can get tested, please visit www.covid19.lacounty.gov/testing/.

For updated isolation and quarantine guidance, please visit www.publichealth.lacounty.gov.

COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and are recommended for everyone 5 years old and older to help protect against COVID-19. 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 and many community sites where first, second, and third doses are available.

To find a vaccination site near you, or to make an appointment, please visit:

www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) or

www.VacunateLosAngeles.com (Spanish).

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital

Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital reported Wednesday zero tests pending, 86 patients in the hospital, a total of 1,811 patients who have been treated and discharged since the pandemic began, and one additional deceased (198 total), confirmed spokesman Patrick Moody.

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 generally lags 48 hours behind.

William S. Hart Union High School District COVID-19 Dashboard

The William S. Hart Union High School District provides ongoing information to our community regarding COVID-19 cases while maintaining confidentiality for our students and staff. The COVID-19 case data below is updated regularly to indicate any currently confirmed COVID-19 positive case in staff members or students by school site. The data below is specific to individuals who have been physically present on a District campus within 14 days of receiving a positive COVID-19 test. The District, in conjunction with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, conducts contact tracing and directly notifies and provides resources for parents of students identified as close contacts (6 feet or less for 15 cumulative minutes or more).

Note: To see the communication process in the event of a positive COVID-19 case, visit https://www.hartdistrict.org/apps/pages/covid-19dashboard.

Student Dashboard

Staff Dashboard

Santa Clarita Valley Wednesday Update
As of 5 p.m. Wednesday, the L.A. County Public Health dashboard reported three additional deaths in the city of Santa Clarita, brining the total of COVID-19 deaths to 379 date.

The following is the community breakdown of the 379 SCV residents who have died, according to the L.A. County dashboard:

313 in Santa Clarita

23 in Castaic

13 in Acton

9 in Stevenson Ranch

7 in unincorporated Canyon Country

5 in Agua Dulce

3 in Val Verde

2 in Valencia

1 in unincorporated Bouquet Canyon

1 in Elizabeth Lake

1 in Newhall

1 in unincorporated Saugus/Canyon Country

0 in Lake Hughes (**revised from 1)

SCV Cases

Of the 54,762 cases reported to Public Health for the SCV to date, the community breakdown is as follows:

City of Santa Clarita: 40,603

* Castaic: 5,776

Stevenson Ranch: 2,940

Canyon Country (unincorporated portion): 1,864

Acton: 1,093

Val Verde: 599

Agua Dulce: 578

Valencia (unincorporated portion west of I-5): 495

Saugus (unincorporated portion):  241

Elizabeth Lake: 153

Bouquet Canyon: 104

Lake Hughes: 104

Newhall (Unincorporated portion): 74

Saugus/Canyon Country: 68

Sand Canyon: 34

San Francisquito/Bouquet Canyon: 28

Placerita Canyon: 8

*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.

California Wednesday

The California Department of Public Health released the following data Wednesday. The most up to date data is available on the state’s COVID-19 data dashboard.

Statewide COVID-19 Data

Cases, hospitalizations and deaths are largely occurring among unvaccinated populations. See the data for unvaccinated and vaccinated cases, hospitalizations and deaths.

Omicron Update

Overall, clinical and wastewater data indicate that Omicron cases are present in most regions of the state. The surveillance data and estimates we have are consistent with CDC reports that about 95 percent of the cases nationwide are Omicron. Data from several sources, including genetic sequencing from COVID-19 patients, wastewater surveillance, and reports from health care partners, indicate that the proportion of cases due to the Omicron variant is increasing rapidly. Additionally, genetic sequencing does not represent real-time data, as sequencing generally occurs several days or more after initial tests are positive for COVID-19.

Vaccinations

– 66,723,263 total vaccines administered.

– 80.4 percent of the eligible population (5+) has been vaccinated with at least one dose.

– 182,055 people a day are receiving COVID-19 vaccination (average daily dose count over 7 days).

Cases

– California has 6,188,867 confirmed cases to date.

– Monday’s average case count is 69,798 (average daily case count over 7 days).

Testing

The testing positivity rate is 23.1 percent (average rate over 7 days).

Hospitalizations

(*Note: As of Jan. 5, 2022, hospitalized and ICU patients only reflect confirmed COVID-19 cases).

– There are 12,317 * hospitalizations statewide.

– There are 1,903 * ICU patients statewide.

– Unvaccinated people were 8.0 times more likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 (data from Dec. 20, 2021 to Dec. 26, 2021).

Deaths
– There have been 76,683 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

– COVID-19 claims the lives of 47 Californians each day (average daily death count over 7 days).
Unvaccinated people were 20.8 times more likely to die from COVID-19 (data from Dec. 6, 2021 to Dec. 12, 2021).

Health Care Workers

As of Jan. 6, local health departments have reported 136,816 confirmed positive cases in health care workers and 540 deaths statewide.

Testing Turnaround Time

The testing turnaround time dashboard reports how long California patients are waiting for COVID-19 test results. During the week of Dec. 25 to Jan. 1, the average time patients waited for test results was 1.2 days. During this same time period, 65% of patients received test results in one day and 92 percent received them within two days.

Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C)

As of Jan. 10, there have been 783 cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) reported statewide. 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.

Keep California Healthy
Protect yourself, family, friends and your community by following these prevention measures:

– Get vaccinated when it’s your turn. Californians age 16+ are eligible to make an appointment.

– If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle or body aches), call your health care provider.

– If you believe you have been exposed, get tested. Free, confidential testing is available statewide.

– Keep gatherings small and outdoors and follow state and local public health guidance.

– Wear a mask and get the most out of masking – an effective mask has both good fit and good filtration.

– Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

– Delay non-essential travel outside of California until you are fully vaccinated. Follow California’s travel advisory.

– Avoid close contact with people who are sick and stay home from work and school if you feel ill.

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

– Answer the call or text if a contact tracer from the CA COVID Team or your local health department tries to connect.

Additional data and udpates:

Tracking COVID-19 in California

State Dashboard – Daily COVID-19 data

County Map – Local data, including tier status and ICU capacity

Data and Tools – Models and dashboards for researchers, scientists, and the public

Blueprint for a Safer Economy– Data for establishing tier status

COVID-19 Race & Ethnicity Data – Weekly updated Race & Ethnicity data

Cases and Deaths by Age Group – Weekly updated Deaths by Age Group data

Health Equity Dashboard – See how COVID-19 highlights existing inequities in health

Tracking Variants – Data on the variants California is currently monitoring

Safe Schools for All Hub – Information about safe in-person instruction

School Districts Reopening Map – data on public schools and reported outbreaks

Always check with trusted sources for the latest accurate information about novel coronavirus:

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health

California Department of Public Health

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Spanish

World Health Organization

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

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.

For more information about what Californians can do to prevent the spread of COVID-19, visit Coronavirus (COVID-19) in California.

California continues to issue guidance on preparing and protecting California from COVID-19. Consolidated guidance is available on the California Department of Public Health’s Guidance webpage.

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SCV NewsBreak
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Wednesday, Jan 26, 2022
State Superintendent Launches Statewide Mental Health Program
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond announced "A Trusted Space: Redirecting Grief to Growth", a film-based program to help address increasing mental health challenges faced by students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tuesday, Jan 25, 2022
Big Chicken Franchise to Open Location in Valencia
Big Chicken, the star-powered chicken concept founded by legendary basketball Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, announced today it has signed a franchise agreement with chiropractor Dr. Pat Khaziran and his business partner and Southern California restaurateur Andy Gitipityapon to open a location in Valencia.
Monday, Jan 24, 2022
Rudi Sodamin Named Princess Cruises’ Culinary Arts Head
Princess Cruises announced Monday Chef Rudi Sodamin will become its first head of culinary arts, effective immediately.
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Big Chicken, the star-powered chicken concept founded by legendary basketball Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, announced today it has signed a franchise agreement with chiropractor Dr. Pat Khaziran and his business partner and Southern California restaurateur Andy Gitipityapon to open a location in Valencia.
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