Los Angeles Covid Cases Up About 300% In Past Month; May Be Sixth Wave – Deadline


The average number of daily new Covid infections in Los Angeles County has jumped by just about 300% over the past month and roughly 25% over the past week alone. Today, they topped 3,000 for the first time since mid-February. One month ago, the number of daily cases in LA was 1,060. But the increase has not translated to a meaningful rise in local hospitalizations or deaths thusfar.

County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer expressed hope that, given four weeks of rising cases with only a small uptick of hospitalizations, LA might avoid a subsequent wave of hospitalizations and deaths such as the one it saw in last winter’s Omicron wave.

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LADPH

Asked whether the current jump in daily cases could be considered a “sixth wave” of the pandemic in the county Ferrer said, “I’m comfortable with you characterizing this as a wave.” But, she said, if it is a wave it is different than the others so far.

“All of our waves have seen an increase in hospitalizations and deaths and it’s four weeks now and we haven’t seen either of those,” observed the public health director. “I don’t think we have enough data points… It’s certainly an increase… I hope we don’t see exponential growth [in cases]. ”

She said that Angelenos needed to be “keeping our masks on a little more than we were a few weeks ago.”

Ferrer continued, “We think that’ll make the difference. We’re also encouraging people to go vaxxed and boosted. “

To the suggestion that, given the lack of hospitalizations, the public could stop worrying about large case spikes Ferrer replied, “This is not the time to stop worrying about cases at all.”

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Regions of the US showing prevalence of BA.2.12.1 (in red) vs. BA.2 (pink) and the original Omicron (purple)
CDC

She pointed to the rise in hospitalizations in the Northeast and the rapid rise of the latest Omicron subvariant there. The number of Covid patients hospitalized in New York, which saw BA.2.12.1 weeks before LA, has more than tripled in the past month.

“We don’t know enough about this new variant of BA.2.12.1,” Ferrer said. “So let’s continue to be cautious. Let’s continue to be prepared, depending on what we’re learning and seeing. “

City News Service contributed to this report.





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