Long Beach reports 3 new COVID-19 deaths; positive cases hit three-month low

Long Beach on Thursday reported another thee deaths due to COVID-19, but case rates and the positivity rate among those tested hit a three-month low.

The city has now reported a total of 829 deaths and 51,092 cases since the pandemic began last March. Roughly 11% of the city’s total population has tested positive at some point in the past year.

But there is good news in the metrics released this week. The positivity rate among those tested sank to 4.2% and the case rate per 100,000 people is now 12.7. Both numbers are lowest they’ve been since mid-November.

Meanwhile in Los Angeles County, the number of people hospitalized as of Thursday was 1,886, with 573 people in intensive care, according to state figures. Total hospitalizations in the county fell below 2,000 on Wednesday for the first time since late December.

Average daily hospitalizations peaked at more than 8,000 in early January.

The county reported another 132 COVID-19 deaths on Thursday, although 10 of those fatalities were actually announced Wednesday afternoon by health officials in Long Beach and Pasadena. The new fatalities increased the overall countywide death toll from throughout the pandemic to 21,102.

The death toll rose sharply on Wednesday when the county announced that 806 deaths that occurred between early December and early February had been determined to be COVID-19 fatalities that were not reported to the county earlier. The additional deaths were identified through a review of death certificates.

The county on Thursday also announced another 2,072 new COVID-19 cases, lifting the cumulative total since the pandemic began to 1,187,474.

County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer noted Wednesday that the average daily number of new cases was continuing to drop, reaching about 1,300 per day—a dramatic drop from early January but still slightly above the 1,200 daily average seen in early November, before the winter surge began.

City News Service contributed to this report.

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