Another person in Long Beach has tested positive for the coronavirus—upping the city’s total COVID-19 cases to four—officials said Wednesday.
Officials are waiting for results on three more tests, and four other people have already tested negative, according to the city, which has been limited in its ability to screen suspected cases because of a lack of available tests.
Health officials say they’re also monitoring another 50 people, although that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve been exposed to the coronavirus.
City officials said the fourth person to test positive is a man who traveled internationally to a location where coronavirus was spreading. A spokeswoman said the man is isolating himself at home, but no further details were available because health officials were still investigating.
The three others cases are a person who traveled to Northern California and two people who were on a cruise in Egypt—both areas where the virus was present. Two people are quarantined at home while the third was being treated at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center.
The news comes as Cal State Long Beach announced it would suspend face-to-face classes beginning Thursday to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Chapman, Pepperdine, Cal State Fullerton, UCLA and USC are also moving toward holding all online classes.
In Long Beach, health officials are not recommending the closures of schools or other public facilities at this time. They say there are undoubtedly more undiagnosed cases in the city, but they don’t believe the coronavirus is widespread yet.
The immediate threat to the general public is low in the United States, and there are currently no restrictions on public gatherings, Long Beach officials said.
Unlike Los Angeles County, Long Beach currently has no cases of community transmission, a term meaning a COVID-19 patient has no clear connection to a previous case or a known point of exposure. By contrast, Los Angeles County as a whole has seen two cases of suspected community exposure.
Today, L.A. County officials also announced their first death linked to COVID-19. Long Beach doesn’t fall under the umbrella of Los Angeles County health officials because it has its own health department.
A woman who died was in her 60s. She died shortly after being hospitalized for the coronavirus, according to Dr. Barbara Ferrer, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.
Ferrer said the woman had underlying health conditions. She was visiting friends in LA County after traveling internationally, including a long layover in South Korea.
Ferrer also announced six more people had tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the county total to 28 including the four cases in Long Beach.
LA County’s cases have been spread across the region, according to Ferrer.
“We also know there’s a lot of cases that have yet to be diagnosed,” she said.
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