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This week we are finally on the verge of a monumental change in the course of this pandemic. Health care workers will start getting the vaccine this week. We now have the ability to put this crisis behind us. Stopping this virus is not a Republican or Democrat act. It is a humane act that serves us individually as well as our entire community. It is time to start loving our neighbor by doing our part to save lives.

Please continue to stay safe, wear your mask, and continue to help slow the spread of this virus.

Here are the most updated numbers:

Today, Public Health has confirmed 48 new deaths and 7,344 new cases of COVID-19. The number of new cases reported today reflect a reporting lag from one large lab; this lab started reporting the backlog of cases as of Dec. 15.

To date, Public Health identified 532,730 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 8,345 deaths. Since the beginning of the surge on Nov. 1, cases have increased 625 percent with younger people continuing to drive the increase in community transmission in the county. More than 70 percent of cases are from people under the age of 50 years old.

There are 4,203 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized and 21 percent of these people are in the ICU. Today’s number reflects an increase of more than 1,200 patients in just a week, when on Dec. 7, the daily number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 was 2,988. Since Dec. 1, the County has surpassed previous all-time highs every day.

Antelope Valley Cumulative Cases: 21,585 and Antelope Valley Deaths: 210. This total includes 386 cumulative cases and that have occurred among inmates at the California State Prison.

Lancaster (9,627) + Palmdale (10,637) + the unincorporated areas of: Del Sur (62), East Lancaster (4), Elizabeth Lake (24), Lake Hughes (17), Leona Valley (45), Littlerock (220), Littlerock/Juniper Hills (43), Littlerock/Pearblossom (206), Llano (22), North Lancaster (64), Palmdale (36), Pearblossom/Llano (41), Quartz Hill (483), South Antelope Valley (10), Southeast Antelope Valley (32), West Antelope Valley (12).