L.A. County reports 358 new coronavirus cases, 13 deaths

ARCADIA, CA - OCTOBER 07, 2020 - A sign tells customers to wear masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19 as shoppers return to indoor shopping at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping mall in Arcadia on October 7, 2020. This is the first day customers were allowed to return to indoor shopping after Los Angeles County eased restrictions and have reopened the malls and the individual stores. Such stores have been closed for weeks, but reopened Wednesday at 25% capacity. Westfield Santa Anita has placed Covid-related signage with one-way traffic, 6 feet distancing when waiting to get into individual stores, hand sanitizing stations and mask are required before entering the mall. (Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)
Customers are reminded that they must wear masks at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping mall in Arcadia. (Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles County public health officials on Sunday reported 358 new coronavirus cases and 13 related deaths.

The COVID-19 data released on Sundays are often lower due to laboratory reporting delays and problems with the state’s data feed.

The number of confirmed infections in Los Angeles County is doubling every 190.6 days. Hospitalizations have grown in recent days, with 751 COVID-19 patients in county medical centers as of Sunday. Hospitalizations remain short of the more than 2,200 reported at the peak of the crisis in mid-July.

State and local officials are closely watching the latest figures as they weigh when and how to reopen businesses and public facilities. L.A. County remains in the strictest tier of the state’s four-tier reopening system — Tier 1, or purple — because it continues to report more than 7 cases per 100,000 residents each day. That means that schools are shut, and many nonessential businesses remain closed for indoor operations.

Over the last seven days, officials have reported 6,975 new cases, which amounts to 69 per 100,000 residents. The daily average over the past week has been 996 new cases and 13.4 deaths. Roughly 74% of those who died were 65 or older.

So far, more than 2,890,000 individuals have been tested in L.A. County. About 9% of those people tested positive.

The rate of all people tested this week who registered positive for the coronavirus remained between 3.3% and 3.6%. This positivity rate helps officials determine whether more new cases are being identified because of increased transmission or because more people are being tested. That rate has hovered around 3% for several weeks, officials said. In July, about 8% of tests were coming back positive.

The latest tally brings L.A. County’s total number of coronavirus cases over the eight-month pandemic to 288,461 and the number of deaths to 6,876. Across Los Angeles County, cases have been reported in 342 cities or communities. East Los Angeles has tallied the most, with 6,757.

Latinos and Black people have contracted the virus at a higher rate than white and Asian American people. After adjusting for population, Latinos are 3.3 times more likely than whites to test positive.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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