Channel 1 Los Angeles
Community transmission of COVID-19 has rapidly increased from Moderate to Substantial, based on the trend in daily new cases of COVID-19. The Los Angeles County Health Officer Order will be modified to require masking for everyone while indoors, regardless of vaccination status, as Los Angeles County sees more than a seven-times increase in new cases since the June 15 reopening. Wearing a mask when indoors reduces the risk of both getting and transmitting the virus. This additional layer of protection can help to slow the spread and does not limit business occupancy and operations.
Tracking the proliferation of the Delta variant is a priority because the Delta variant is more easily spread between people – more than other variants of concern. And while emerging data affirms that fully vaccinated people are well protected from severe infections with Delta variants, people with only one vaccine are not as well-protected, and there is evidence that a very small number of fully vaccinated individuals can become infected and may be able to infect others. From June 27 to July 3, the number of sequenced Delta variants was 124, 71% of all sequences collected that week. Given that slightly under 4 million residents in L.A. County are not yet vaccinated, the risk of increased spread of this variant within the County remains high.
To date, Public Health identified 1,262,578 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 24,566 deaths. Of the three new deaths reported today, one person that passed away was over the age of 80, and two people who passed were between the ages of 50 and 64. Testing results are available for more than 7,142,000 individuals with 16% of people testing positive. There are 406 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized and 22% of these people are in the ICU.
“We share our deepest condolences with those of you who have lost friends, loved ones, and family during this difficult time,” said Muntu Davis, MD, MPH, Los Angeles County Health Officer. “We expect to keep masking requirements in place until we begin to see improvements in our community transmission of COVID-19. But waiting for us to be at high community transmission level before making a change would be too late. Masking indoors must again become a normal practice by all, regardless of vaccination status, so that we can stop the trends and level of transmission we are currently seeing. We continue to urge all eligible residents to get vaccinated in order to protect themselves and their family and friends. Becoming fully vaccinated against COVID-19 remains the best protective action that people can take if they are eligible for it. Although not at 100%, it significantly reduces the risk of infection and, for the small number of people that get infected, it reduces the risk of hospitalization and death once you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.”