LOS ANGELES – Sixty-nine new coronavirus deaths were reported Friday by Los Angeles County health officials, who also confirmed another 2,651 cases.
The new deaths increased the countywide death toll since the start of the pandemic to 4,624; the countywide total of cases from throughout the pandemic rose to 188,541.
To date (July 31), Public Health has identified 2,497 coronavirus cases and 31 deaths in Palmdale; 2,071 cases and 27 deaths in Lancaster; 118 cases and 10 deaths in Quartz Hill; 133 cases and two deaths in Lake Los Angeles; 111 cases and no deaths in the Littlerock/Pearblossom, Juniper Hills areas; and 94 cases and one death in Sun Village. View the latest detailed report here.
County health officials noted that daily death figures reported over the past week have been unusually high — including a one-day record high of 91 fatalities. The average number of daily deaths reported last week was about 38, according to the county.
Health officials have been warning about an anticipated increase in deaths, following a sharp increase in hospitalizations that began in mid-July, roughly two weeks after the Fourth of July weekend that is being blamed for prompting numerous public gatherings despite health restrictions banning them.
Hospital admissions have been leveling off over the past week, but the number of people hospitalized still remains high, with 2,002 confirmed patients as of Friday. That number topped 2,200 for several days earlier this month, the highest level of the pandemic.
“As we are seeing increases these past few days in the numbers of people dying from COVID-19, the reality of the devastation cannot be ignored,” county public health director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement. “Nor can we ignore the reality that there are actions each person can take to prevent these tragic outcomes.
“Together, we can slow the spread of this deadly virus with simple acts of respect and kindness — wear a face covering, avoid gathering with people you don’t live with, stay home as much as possible and practice hand hygiene,” Ferrer said. “Together, we can heal.”
The county again reminded businesses owners of their responsibility to adhere to public health protocols for operating, including the requirement to report to the county any outbreaks of three or more cases.