Health Department Warns Those Participating in Protests to Take Safety Precautions

Los Angeles County reported 1,339 new cases of COVID-19 and 27 additional deaths today, bringing the county’s totals to 239,756 cases and 5,759 fatalities.

The number of people hospitalized as of today was 1,116, down from 1,168 on Friday and well below last month, when the number regularly topped 2,000.

Although coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations have been declining in general of late, the county Department of Public Health continued to warn residents not to become lax in following preventive guidelines, such as wearing face coverings and social distancing.

On Thursday, the agency recognized the resurgence of protests in recent days, fueled by the Wisconsin police shooting of Jacob Blake, and noted planned gatherings Saturday to mark the 50th anniversary of the Chicano Moratorium. The county urged people planning to take part in such events to stay home if they are sick, seek medical attention if they are displaying COVID-19 symptoms, wear a face covering, try to maintain physical distance from others, bring along hand sanitizer and keep their hands clean.

County health officials are warning that the coronavirus can infect children as easily as it can adults, while also reporting three additional local cases of a pediatric inflammatory syndrome linked to COVID-19 infections.

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday released a revised system for tracking counties’ efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus and providing guidance on possible reopening of more businesses and schools. But the county stressed that local officials had not yet fully reviewed the new state guidance, and the local health order has not been changed to allow such businesses to reopen.

“We extend our condolences to all who are grieving the loss of a loved one to COVID-19, and may peace and comfort find you during this difficult time,”.

“In order for our county to move through the state’s tier structure which will allow us to reopen more businesses, we must slow the COVID-19 transmission rates we are seeing,” said Barbara Ferrer, the county’s director of public health. “Currently, we are in Tier 1 with widespread community transmission and an average of about 13 new cases a day per 100,000 residents. This tier carries the most restrictions for the re-opening of many sectors. To demonstrate reduced spread of the virus and move to Tier 2, we need to reduce our transmission rate to 7 new cases a day per 100,000 residents,” she continued.

“…For everyone throwing or attending parties, hanging out in crowded spaces, or insisting that the public health rules don’t apply to you or your business, your actions make it much more likely that we remain in Tier 1 for many weeks to come; this makes it harder for our children to get back to school and for many adults to get back to work.”

The health department on Friday also confirmed another three local cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome, or MIS-C, in children, bringing the total to 28. The syndrome affects primarily children, but can be found in people up to age 20, resulting in inflammation of body parts including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin eyes and gastrointestinal organs, potentially having life-long health impacts.

There have not been any deaths from the syndrome reported in the county.

The number of confirmed COVID-19 infections in West Hollywood has increased by two to 494. The Health Department’s COVID-19 database today reports that the number of West Hollywood residents who have died of COVID-19 related illnesses is five.

In Beverly Hills, the number of confirmed remains at 613. The number of COVID-19 related deaths in Beverly Hills remains at 11. The number of COVID-19 infection confirmed among Culver City residents remains at 370. The number of deaths remains at 29. Hollywood has five newly confirmed infections, bringing its total to date is 1,055. The number of deaths remains at 11. The Melrose neighborhood has 13 new confirmed infections, bringing its total to date to 1,737. The number of COVID-19 related deaths has increased by one to 64.

Public Health has a dedicated call line for confirmed cases of COVID-19. If you are positive for COVID-19 and have not yet connected with a public health specialist or need more information on services, call toll-free at 1 (833) 540-0473. Residents who do not have COVID-19 can continue to call 211 for resources or more information.

One way the virus can be transmitted is through a cough, a sneeze or even through air that comes from the mouth when someone talks. For that reason, residents must wear face coverings when out in public and can be cited for not doing so. The citations come with a $250 fine and a $50 administrative fee.

West Hollywood residents with questions about the COVID-19 pandemic or who are looking for resources to deal with it can find answers on the City of West Hollywood’swebsite. Here is a list of links to sections about particular subjects and issues: