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COVID-19 Roundup: More Deaths Reported as Testing Ability Increases

A title card created by the Alhambra Source from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's renderings of COVID-19.

Location

Alhambra , CA

At its daily press briefing Monday, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health announced that the number of deaths from COVID-19 has risen to seven, while also announcing the acquisition of 20,000 test kits with a capacity to conduct 5,000 tests each day.

The county is prioritizing first responders and medical staff, then vulnerable populations, then access to health care providers to test the ill, and finally widespread public access, according to L.A. County Fire Department Medical Director Clayton Kazan, who is coordinating testing.

Kazan said it will take one to two weeks for the preparations to be in place for the large testing capacity.

The City of Los Angeles and L.A. County are working with a South Korean company to provide 100,000 tests per week, running 30,000 per day, L.A. City Councilmember David Ryu announced.

With an increase in testing comes an inevitable increase in confirmed infections. This does not necessarily mean there is an outbreak of new cases, but does help to identify where any concentration of cases lies, Ryu said.

L.A. City Council President Nury Martinez issued a call to action for all manufacturing companies in Los Angeles, urging businesses to pivot to create necessary supplies to create tests and protective equipment for medical staff and first responders.

Los Angeles has the twenty-sixth largest economy in the world, Martinez said. If public and private industries pull together and move before they are directed to by state and federal authorities, they can speed the containment and ultimately stop the spread of COVID-19.

The health department also tightened the Health Officer Order to match the state order, specifying that public gatherings and events are prohibited, and personal grooming services are non-essential.

Supervisor Kathryn Barger, the chair of the L.A. County Board of Supervisors, said hiking trails, parking at the beach and parks throughout the state are closing after scores of residents flocked to those destinations over the weekend in apparent disregard of social distancing orders.

So cancel those baseball games in Alhambra parks – that already had signage of closure – because they’re still not allowed.

The Alhambra Police Department is still trying to educate the public about what is or is not allowed, including posting regularly on their Facebook page. The city says they have not begun issuing citations for breaking the Health Officer Order, but “will be an option if people don’t comply.”

Previously, groupings of 10 or more were banned, now all public and private groupings are prohibited. Disobeying the Health Officer Order a misdemeanor. The Los Angeles Times has a running list of the essential and non-essential businesses, or read the update to the order here.

The United States Naval Service Mercy hospital ship will operate at the Port of Los Angeles to help alleviate hospital crowding due to non-coronavirus patients.

The California National Guard is deployed throughout the state to assist food banks and other humanitarian services, but, at the briefing, L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has not called for their assistance.

Over the last three days the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health reported:

  • Two deaths on Saturday, one on Sunday and two on Monday; total reported is seven.
    • Four were over 65, one was 30-50.
    • One person resided in Miracle Mile.
    • One person resided in Del Ray.
    • One person resided in Culver City and had underlying health conditions.
    • One person resided in Glendale and had underlying health conditions.
    • The 30-50 year old’s residential location is still under investigation.
  • 536 total cases, including Long Beach and Pasadena
  • Number of cases by age in L.A. County, excluding Long Beach and Pasadena:
    • 0 to 17: 9 cases
    • 18 to 40: 217 cases
    • 41 to 65: 198 cases
    • Over 65: 92 cases
  •  The number of cases around the West San Gabriel Valley are as follows:
    • Pasadena with three
    • Alhambra with four
    • Monterey Park with three
    • South Pasadena with three
    • West Covina with one
    • East Los Angeles with two
  • 61 cases are under investigation
    • There are a number of cases that were not under the department’s jurisdiction; numbers are subject to change.

If you are feeling mildly ill, you are now instructed to stay at home for a week, or 72 hours after being fever-free, whichever is longer. Call your doctor if your symptoms worsen, and elderly, those with underlying health conditions or those who are pregnant should contact a doctor early in their sickness.

Do not call 9-1-1 or go to an emergency room for COVID-19 testing unless you are seriously ill. To get tested you must be recommended by your doctor. If you don’t have a doctor, call 2-1-1, L.A. County’s confidential help line.

Symptoms include fever, coughing and shortness of breath. Call a doctor if you’re experiencing these.

Emergency warning signs are difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to wake, and bluish lips or face. If you or someone you know has these, seek medical attention immediately.

If you have come in contact with a case, you must quarantine yourself for 14 days, regardless of whether or not you develop symptoms. If you do, call your health care provider.

 

For more information from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, go to their page.

Read the county’s Emergency Operations Center update here.

The California Department of Public Health’s coronavirus page is here.

This is an extremely trying time. If you need mental health support, call the county 24-hour help line at 800-854-7771.

 

For all of the reporting from the Alhambra Source, go to our Stay Healthy page.

Thank you for reading our story! Alhambra Source is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Our newsroom reports fact-based quality journalism that educates, informs and engages our diverse communities - with no paywall. Support our mission and donate today!

The Alhambra Source encourages comment on our stories. However, we do not vet comments for accuracy or endorse links to posts in the comment section. The thoughts and opinions expressed belong solely to the author of the comment.

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