“We unfortunately anticipate, as we move into the next two weeks in December, that we may see a surge overlap with the wave we’re already in.” It was Dr Anthony Fauci on Meet the press last Sunday. See an excerpt from Fauci’s comments below.
His concerns were echoed by Los Angeles County health officials on Monday, warning of the dark days ahead.
“We are at the most difficult time of the pandemic,” said LA County Director of Public Health Barbara Ferrer.
Ferrer noted that the average number of Covid-19 patients hospitalized in Los Angeles has increased 93% in the past two weeks.
“While we currently have adequate capacity in our hospitals and have extensive plans in place to take appropriate action to manage these huge increases, a continued increase in cases is simply not sustainable,” he said. she declared. And there were additional concerns after local Thanksgiving gatherings and millions of Americans traveled last week.
California Coronavirus Update: Governor Gavin Newsom Warns of New,
Ferrer said the actions Angelenos took over Thanksgiving weekend will show up in the coronavirus numbers in about two weeks. “The worst-case scenario,” Ferrer said, “is that we don’t take care of ourselves” by wearing masks and limiting contact with others.
In this situation, said the manager, “we have a surge in addition to a surge in 2-3 weeks.” This means that there will be another increase in addition to the record numbers already seen.
On Monday, the county reported 5,150 more confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 17 more deaths. The new cases have pushed the county above the cumulative mark of 400,000 infections, with the total reaching 401,448. Since the start of the pandemic, 7,656 people have died in LA County from causes related to the coronavirus.
The number of people hospitalized also continued to rise, reaching 2,185 on Monday. With the number of hospitals increasing, officials fear the healthcare system will be overwhelmed if the surge is not reversed.
A month ago today.
Stay at home as much as possible, don’t get together with people outside your home, wear a face mask properly, and stay six feet from others if you go outside. https://t.co/3XLncgiTzV
– LA Public Health (@lapublichealth) December 1, 2020
Ahead, the region faces not only the potential ‘surge plus a surge’ scenario described above, but also the potential infections linked to an even bigger family vacation: Christmas. Beyond that, health officials have long feared that the worst-case winter Covid will coincide with the annual spike in flu cases after Christmas.
Ferrer noted that the growing number of hospitals also threatened healthcare workers, who are the most limited element of the system in terms of capacity. Ferrer on Monday announced 747 more cases of COVID-19 among healthcare workers.
“The frontline workers we rely on to take care of us in times of illness are themselves at increased risk of becoming ill,” she said.
Ferrer, however, stressed that the continuously alarming number of new coronavirus cases and hospitalizations necessitated the new restrictions, saying the virus “is rampant in almost every part of our county.”
“Contrary to the sentiments expressed by some, many of these cases could have been avoided if individuals and businesses followed the simple public health measures of masking, distancing and controlling infections,” she said. “As we all see, even if a relatively small number of businesses and individuals fail to adhere to reasonable precautions, many more suffer the consequences of these failures.
“We are aware that there are many who are tired of repeated demands for sacrifice and others who are unhappy and frustrated with the latest security changes, especially those that have had a negative impact on businesses and their employees. We really have no choice but to use all the tools available to stop the surge. Until there is a vaccine, each of us must protect everyone around us.
Earlier today, California Gov. Gavin Newsom warned of a “drastic” new shutdown of the state.
EARLIER: Dr Anthony Fauci tells @chucktodd that “it is not too late” to stop the spread of Covid.
Dr. Fauci: “We might see a surge superimposed on this surge we’re already in. ” pic.twitter.com/apLV5qbABa
– Meet the press (@MeetThePress) November 29, 2020
City News Service contributed to this report.