15 October 2020 COVID-19 Update: Los Angeles County

An article in yesterday’s Los Angeles Times article was entitled “Coronavirus transmission rate grows in L.A. County.” This actually is not the case – it is holding steady (not particularly good news either).
The Los Angeles County Health Department is now reporting COVID-19 statistics every Tuesday for the purposes of state-wide tier alignment so I have adjusted my analyses accordingly. Below are the County’s latest case numbers, still in the “purple” (widespread) zone.

The current case rate stands at 9.58 new daily cases per 100,000 population. This has been flat for the past 4 weeks with prior rates of 9.51, 9.61 and 9.66. Decreasing to the “red” tier (substantial) would require rates to dip below 7. The closest LA has gotten to such was on 9.15 when the rate was 8.14.

So what are the implications of continued sideways movement? There is really no silver lining here for as rates stay steady, we remain at risk of yet another epidemic surge. Community transmission of an infectious disease can ‘smolder’ much like a forest fire. Hot spots, if not extinguished, can easily flare and propagate. By not maintaining downwards pressure on case rates, we are simply prolonging the inevitable – another surge.

According to the linked article, new infections has been connected largely to worksite outbreaks, defined as a cluster of three or more cases. According to Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrar, “this is a cause for concern, and we’ll continue to be monitoring what’s happening at workplaces.”

Link: https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-10-14/coronavirus-transmission-rate-grows-in-la-county

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