LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer on Monday announced another 22 deaths due to the coronavirus, raising the county’s total to 2,384. She also announced another 978 cases of the illness, pushing the total to 55,968.
To date (June 1), Public Health has identified 768 coronavirus cases and 16 deaths in Palmdale; 613 cases and 12 deaths in Lancaster; 46 cases and nine deaths in Quartz Hill; 30 cases and two deaths in Lake Los Angeles; 36 cases and no deaths in the Littlerock/Pearblossom, Juniper Hills areas; and 19 cases and no deaths in Sun Village. View the latest detailed report here.
Ferrer urged residents to heed curfew restrictions amid continuing protests over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, while also expressing concern about crowded demonstrations leading to a spike in coronavirus cases.
“There’s a lot of risk of these gatherings becoming super-spreader events — that is events where a great deal of transmission of the COVID-19 virus is happening,” Ferrer said. “We’ll need to work together to prevent these events from resulting in many more people becoming seriously ill from COVID-19.”
Ferrer and County Supervisor Kathryn Barger both noted that given the 14-day incubation period for the coronavirus, the effects of the mass protests on the county’s COVID-19 crisis won’t be known for weeks.
“My biggest concern now is … in two to three weeks, what is going to happen based on the conduct of individuals over the weekend,” Barger said. “And we don’t know. And we’re going to be watching very closely.”
County health officials also confirmed the county’s first known death of a jail inmate due to the virus, along with the death of a pregnant woman, whose fetus also died. Ferrer also announced four more deaths among the county’s homeless population, raising the number of homeless who have died from the virus to 11.
Ferrer said the total number of health care workers who have contracted the virus was 5,398, up 537 from last week. She said 39 health care workers have died from the illness, up nine from last Monday.
Barger noted the devastating impact weekend violence had on county businesses, many of which were just beginning to reopen under loosened coronavirus health restrictions. She and Ferrer noted that the unrest in the county has not changed health restrictions, and businesses are still permitted to reopen as long as they meet guidelines to control capacity and protect customers and employees.
But many businesses have been ordered to close their doors due to curfews imposed by the county in response to protests.
Ferrer stressed as much as possible the need for people taking part in those protests — or gathering at any location — to take precautions against spreading the virus.
“We need to keep as much distance from each other when we’re out and about and we need to wear our face coverings, and that’s how we get through the pandemic,” Ferrer said. “So when we see examples where that’s not happening, its a cause for concern, and from my perspective, it’s also a reminder to each of us that we can help other people remember how to be respectful and kind to each other by using those cloth face coverings.”
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/