Long Beach reports 10 more deaths due to COVID-19 as cases continue to fall

Long Beach health officials on Wednesday reported 10 more deaths due to COVID-19, a number that remains elevated despite falling cases.

The city reported nine deaths on Tuesday, however the numbers early this week account for the prior three days due to the Presidents Day holiday.

The latest figures show 13 of the 19 new deaths this week were among residents of long-term care facilities, which were hit hard early in the pandemic but remain a hotspot for cases and deaths.

The city’s case rate, meanwhile, continues to fall. The city reported 214 new cases on Tuesday and 169 cases on Wednesday, putting its case rate at roughly 23 per 100,000 residents. The city’s positivity rate among those who are tested fell to 6.1%.

The city has now reported a total of 50,579 cases since March, and 787 deaths.

County health officials said Wednesday another four cases of the coronavirus variant first detected in the United Kingdom have been found in Los Angeles County, raising the local total to 12.

The variant is not considered more dangerous, but it is more easily spread from person to person. LA County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said there are likely far more cases of the variant present in the county, but they haven’t been detected due to the limited amount of gene sequencing that’s needed to detect them.

Overall, the county’s COVID-19 situation continues to improve, with average daily case numbers down 85% from earlier January, average hospitalizations down 61% and average daily deaths down 91%.

“The decreases that we see are meaningful and they’re all good news, but the numbers still remain higher than the numbers we saw back in autumn,” Ferrer said. “These numbers continuing to decrease is not a given. This will only continue if we’re all in the game and we’re all continuing to use the tools we have at hand.”

The county reported another 162 COVID-19 deaths on Wednesday, raising the overall death toll in the county to 19,368.

Another 2,394 cases were confirmed, lifting the cumulative total from throughout the pandemic to 1,171,664.

According to state figures, the number of people hospitalized due to COVID in the county dropped to 2,757 as of Wednesday, with 859 people in intensive care. That’s a vast drop from the 8,000 hospital cases reported in early January.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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