On Monday, California Governor Gavin Newsom, citing the growing number of coronaviruses, ordered indoor operations for restaurants, movie theaters, wineries, zoos, gyms, houses of worship, indoor protests, tattoo shops, nail salons, and hair salons. and closed shopping malls in southern California. Bars must close all trades.
The governor announced that he is requiring all California counties to shut down indoor operations for their restaurants, movie theaters, wineries, zoos, and bars.
Southern California counties face additional specific shutdown orders, as described in Newsom’s tweet below.
A few minutes later, Los Angeles County Director of Public Health Barbara Ferrer announced that the interior closure list includes “offices for all non-critical sectors.”
That occurs after the health department closed a clothing factory in downtown Los Angeles over the weekend after 300 of its employees were infected.
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The LA County Health website directs users to the state site for a definition of “essential workforce” sectors, from which one can imagine which “noncritical” sectors.
The state site says essential sectors include employees in these categories who cannot work from home: healthcare providers and caregivers; employees in the emergency services sector, such as police and fire; food production, processing and delivery; the energy sector; water and wastewater; Transport and logistics; communications and IT; government operations; critical manufacturing of transportation products, components and machinery; financial services; chemical and dangerous services; defending; and industrial, commercial and personal shelter services.
Ferrer announced an additional 13 deaths Monday, totaling 3,822 in Los Angeles County. She then emphasized that the recent decrease in deaths was likely due to a decrease in COVID-related deaths in qualified nursing homes. Deaths in the outside world, he noted, had not fallen. Ferrer said he expected the number of deaths to increase among the general population, given that deaths are a lagging indicator.
“Everything points to an alarming trend,” said Ferrer. “While our death rate has been relatively stable, we will soon see corresponding increases in deaths.”
According to the county health department, 2,593 new cases of COVID-19 have been discovered in the past 24 hours, for a total of 136,129. The day before, health officials reported a record nearly a day for new cases at 3,322.
The department did not immediately release test positivity numbers or numbers of COVID patients at the hospital and in ICU beds, but Ferrer said the admissions are occurring “at a much higher rate.”
The latter is especially important, as the department revealed on Friday that there were only 113 hospital beds available in the county, not including possible emergency beds that could be put into service. Extrapolation from Sunday’s report seems to indicate that that total had further decreased.
A COVID Health Department dashboard then indicated that 2,056 people were currently hospitalized due to coronaviruses and 576 COVID-infected patients in the ICU. Calculations on the back of the envelope comparing Friday’s numbers with Monday’s indicate that the county has been reduced to approximately 74 ICU beds, less the augmentation capacity mentioned above. That’s for a county with a population of 10 million.
Newsom, for its part, indicated its concern over the UCI numbers on Monday. “This continues to be a disease that places people in our intensive care units and our hospitals,” he said, “and is currently putting pressure on our hospital system and our intensive care units.”