LA County Closes Out Year with Record High Deaths and Hospitalizations on Thursday

Los Angeles County closed out 2020 with bleak COVID numbers as the pandemic surges on. The county had a record number of daily deaths, a record high number of people hospitalized and a near record number of new cases.

County health officials announced 290 more people dead from the coronavirus on Thursday, although a few of those deaths actually occurred over the Christmas holiday weekend and are only now being reported to county officials. Nonetheless, that 290 deaths is the highest number of deaths in a single day the county has ever recorded.

The county’s cumulative death toll is now 10,345 people.

County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer noted that 86% of people who have died from COVID-19 in the county had underlying health conditions, down from more than 90% in the early days of the pandemic.

That drop “indicates that, in fact, there are more people than ever not only passing away, but passing away without any underlying health conditions,” said Ferrer.

As of Thursday, there are 7,546 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Los Angeles County. That’s 131 more people than were hospitalized on Wednesday. That also sets a new record for hospitalizations in the county, beating the previous record of 7,415 which was set on Wednesday.

Of those hospitalized, 20% are in the ICU. That translates to about 1,510 people in the ICU.

Most recent figures from the county Department of Health Services showed a total of 773 available and staffed hospital beds across all of LA County, including just 57 adult ICU beds. However, those numbers change rapidly throughout the day.

Despite a few available ICU beds, the 11-county Southern California region’s ICU bed availability remains at 0%. It first dropped to 0% on Dec. 17 and has remained there ever since. Because of that low ICU bed availability, the state on Tuesday extended its regional stay-at-home lockdown order for an indefinite period of time. Only when the ICU bed availability rises to near 15% will the region’s lockdown order be lifted.

On Thursday, Los Angeles County reported 15,129 new COVID-19 cases. The county now has a cumulative total of 770,602 cases since the pandemic began in March.

To date, more than 4.7 million people have been tested for the coronavirus since the pandemic began. Of those tested, an overall average of 15% are testing positive, but on Thursday, the positivity rate was 22.5%.

West Hollywood recorded 20 new cases on Thursday, for a cumulative total of 1,431 cases since the pandemic began. The city had no new deaths; the cumulative death total remains at 11 deaths.

Below are the numbers for areas near West Hollywood:

  • Beverly Hills – 40 new cases for a total of 1,635 cases and no new deaths for a total of 14 deaths.
  • Carthay neighborhood – 19 new cases for a total of 607 cases and 1 new death for a total of 29 deaths.
  • Culver City – 35 new cases for a total of 1,248 cases and 1 new death for a total of 40 deaths.
  • Hollywood – 53 new cases for a total of 3,316 cases and 2 new deaths for a total of 28 deaths.
  • Melrose neighborhood – 95 new cases total of 4,995 cases and 4 new deaths for a total of 101 deaths.
  • Miracle Mile – 8 new cases for a total of 550 cases and no new deaths for a total of 7 deaths.
  • Park La Brea – 12 new cases for a total of 360 cases and no new deaths for a total of 1 death.
  • Santa Monica – 61 new cases for a total of 2,751 cases and 1 new death for a total of 69 deaths.

The Carthay neighborhood incorporates the areas of Los Angeles between the Beverly Hills city limits and Fairfax Avenue, with Beverly Boulevard as the northern border and Wilshire Boulevard as the southern border.

The Melrose neighborhood incorporates the areas of Los Angeles east of La Cienega and west of Vermont Avenue, between Santa Monica Boulevard on the north and Beverly Boulevard on the south.

For information about the many resources available to West Hollywood residents who have been impacted by COVID-19, CLICK HERE.