Black residents of Los Angeles County are dealing with a rise in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. The development comes shortly after California reopened its economy and the highly contagious Delta variant became the dominant strain in the U.S. Dr. Barbara Ferrer, LA County’s public health director, tells NPR that in comparing data from two-week periods in May and June, the case incident rate for Black residents went from 39 cases per 100,000 people to 46 cases per 100,000 people. Ferrer says there was a significant but smaller increase in hospitalizations: from 8.4 hospitalizations per 100,000 Black residents to 9.3 hospitalizations per 100,000 Black residents.
Los Angeles County, the most populous county in the US, is seeing “exponential growth” of Covid-19 cases as Delta takes over as the dominant strain, according to local health officials. The jump mirrors upticks in other parts of the country over the past week, as experts warn of Delta’s high transmissibility. “We do continue to see an uptick in cases and hospitalizations,” Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said Thursday. “Deaths, fortunately continue to be relatively low, but as hospitalizations continue to increase we anticipate that deaths might also increase.
Alameda County has seen an alarming spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations since lifting most pandemic restrictions last month, health officials said Thursday. The county hit pandemic lows for cases and hospitalizations in early June, with a reported average of 28 daily infections. But it is now seeing more than 70 new cases a day, and the total has topped 100 on some days recently, county data shows.
Arkansas’ coronavirus cases increased by more than 1,000 for the second day in a row Thursday as the state saw another spike in its hospitalizations and deaths. The Department Health reported 1,210 new virus cases, bringing its total since the pandemic began to 354,305. The state’s COVID-19 hospitalizations rose by 49 to 481 and deaths increased by 11 to 5,944.
A dozen Utah counties are now in the high level of transmission category — the most since early March. The levels are determined by the seven-day average percent positivity, the 14-day case rate per 100,000 population, and the utilization of intensive care units.
For weeks, experts have been bracing for the effects of the Delta variant, a version of the coronavirus first discovered in India that is twice as contagious and has an enhanced ability to evade protective antibodies. Now, a startling new surge in cases suggests that Delta is established in Louisiana and the previously beaten-back virus is once again on the rise.“I do think we’re in it,” said Dr. Joe Kanter, assistant secretary of health. “We are seeing what is likely the beginning of increases.”
Wisconsin saw its highest number of positive COVID tests since early June yesterday, with over 200 new cases, according to the state Department of Health Services. Updated statistics show a rise in several new variants of the virus, including the Delta variant — a strain of the coronavirus that seems to be more transmissible and result in more severe disease — which grew by 12 cases in the last week. DHS said the Epsilon variant is no longer a variant of concern and will no longer be tracking it. Wisconsin had seen 649 total cases of that variant.
Best recommendation is to continue increased self-protection of hand-washing, social distancing and mask wearing despite various governments stating it is unnecessary.