Long Beach reports 17 deaths from COVID-19 since Feb. 4; new cases continue to plummet

Long Beach health officials on Monday reported 17 people died of COVID-19—seven of whom were associated with skilled nursing facilities—since Thursday, Feb. 4.

Despite the continued high death counts over the past few weeks, the number of new coronavirus cases continues to plummet—which is further indication that the city and region are on the downward slope of this winter’s spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Just one month ago, local hospitals were assembling teams to begin planning for the possibility of having to ration care because they were lacking beds and staff. At the time, roughly 580 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in the five hospitals that serve Long Beach.

On Monday, that number was cut almost exactly in half: Local hospitals are now caring for 289 people with COVID-19, the city reported.

Officials also reported 558 new cases of the virus since Feb. 4. The city’s case rate was cut to 39.2 per 100,000 residents; one month ago, it was 141.5.

The city and county, however, are still a ways from reaching the threshold the state has set to begin lifting more restrictions on activities and businesses. In order to move to the “red” tier—which would allow limited indoor dining, among other activities—the case rate would need to be reduced to no more than seven cases per 100,000 residents.

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