Reflecting continued drops in virus transmission, Los Angeles County reported 2,615 new COVID-19 infections over a three-day period that ended Monday, Oct. 3.
Daily case numbers reported by the county have been steadily falling for weeks, although health officials have conceded that the official figures could be misleading due to residents primarily using at-home tests that aren’t reported to the county.
The county Department of Public Health on Monday reported 473 new COVID infections, along with 899 from Sunday and 1,243 from Saturday. The county does not release case numbers on weekends. Throughout the pandemic, case numbers reported on Mondays have tended to be low due to delays in lab reports from the weekend.
The 2,615 new cases lifted the county’s overall total from throughout the pandemic to 3,458,848. Another 29 COVID-related deaths were also reported — 12 from Saturday, 10 from Sunday and seven from Monday. The seven-day average rate of people testing positive for the virus fell to 3.7% as of Monday.
Updated COVID-19 hospitalization numbers were not immediately available. As of Saturday, state figures showed there were 494 virus-positive patients in Los Angeles County hospitals, with 55 of them being treated in intensive care. Due to uncertainty surrounding the daily COVID infection numbers, county health officials have been closely monitoring virus levels detected in county wastewater systems to track trends in case levels.
County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer last week said analysis of those systems showed a leveling off of COVID levels, potentially signaling that virus transmission was no longer decreasing. But she said all other monitoring efforts still indicate a low level of concern, and the county is “hopeful that transmission is not increasing at this time.”