LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health Thursday confirmed 48 more deaths and 1,094 new cases of coronavirus.
To date (May 28), Public Health has identified 49,774 positive cases of COVID-19 and a total of 2,241 deaths across all areas of LA County, including 689 coronavirus cases and 16 deaths in Palmdale; 558 cases and 12 deaths in Lancaster; 43 cases and nine deaths in Quartz Hill; 28 cases and two deaths in Lake Los Angeles; 35 cases and no deaths in the Littlerock/Pearblossom, Juniper Hills areas; and 16 cases and no deaths in Sun Village. View the latest detailed report here.
In line with state regulations, Los Angeles County issued a revised health order on Tuesday, allowing retail establishments to resume in-store shopping by customers. It also cleared the way for stores inside indoor shopping malls to reopen, along with offices, flea markets, swap meets, drive-in movie theaters and houses of worship.
The loosening of restrictions prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic was expressed clearly by the county, which changed the name of its health order from “Safer at Home” to “Safer at Work and in the Community.”
The order, however, continues to require residents to wear cloth face coverings when interacting with people outside their own households. It also calls for continued social-distancing. Reopened businesses also must adhere to strict safety protocols, requiring face coverings, limited capacity inside stores and hand-washing and sanitizing stations.
Los Angeles County officials this week submitted a request to the state for a local “variance,” which would allow the county to move deeper into California’s “roadmap” for restarting the economy. Most notably, the variance would allow the county to authorize the reopening of hair salons and restaurants for dine-in service.
It was not immediately clear how long it will take the state to review the county’s application for the variance.
Los Angeles is one of only about a dozen counties in the state not to be given such a variance. The state issues them based on a series of criteria, such as coronavirus case rates and deaths, availability of hospital space, testing capacity and ability to trace contacts of confirmed patients.
The county has been stymied in its effort to obtain a variance, since it remains home to about half of the state’s confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths. But health officials said this week that even though more cases and deaths are being reported, the rates are dropping, along with the number of people hospitalized on a daily basis.
“Hospitalizations are down. Deaths are down. The number of cases is up but that’s a good thing … because it means a lot more people are getting tested, but our positivity rate is also down,” county public health director Barbara Ferrer said.
An interactive dashboard is available that provides comprehensive information on COVID-19 cases, along with maps and graphs showing data by city and community. To view Public Health’s COVID-19 Surveillance Dashboard, visit: http://dashboard.publichealth.lacounty.gov/covid19_surveillance_dashboard/