With schools concluding the third week of in- person instruction for the fall term, Los Angeles County health officials are concerned about a trend of rising coronavirus case rates among children who aren’t yet eligible to get vaccinated.
“Case, hospitalization and death rates are higher among unvaccinated members of all groups than they are among those vaccinated,’’ Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said. “Vaccinated people continue to have rates for all outcomes that are many-fold lower than those unvaccinated—they are four to eight times less likely to be hospitalized, and five to seven times less likely to die from an infection.
“During this period of high transmission, protecting those younger than 12 who are not yet eligible for the vaccine, is of utmost importance and we can all take as many precautions as feasible to limit risk of transmission.’’
Ferrer provided a list of safety precautions, including:
— Moving activities outdoors whenever
— Distancing and avoiding crowds;
— Masking always when indoors and outdoors
if distancing isn’t possible; and
— Carefully assessing nonessential activities
that carry more risk of transmission.
Over the past two weeks, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health announced 2,232 new positive COVID-19 tests and five additional deaths on Sunday, bringing the county’s cumulative totals to 1,403,053 cases and 25,245 fatalities since the pandemic began.
The number of COVID patients in county hospitals was 1,687 as of Aug. 29, according to state figures, with 453 of those in intensive care.
During the month of August, 14 school “outbreaks’’ were confirmed, involving three or more linked infections, with Ferrer noting that half of them were associated with youth sports.
According to Ferrer, 74 percent of eligible L.A. County residents age 12 and up have received at least one dose of vaccine, and 64 percent are fully vaccinated.
Of the county’s overall population of about 10.3 million people—including those under age 12 who aren’t eligible for the shots—63 percent have received at least one dose, and 55 percent are fully vaccinated.