Beginning yesterday (Saturday 7/17), Los Angeles County began another mask mandate- regardless of vaccination status. LA County has seen cases rise rapidly in past weeks, with more than 1,000 cases every day. Over the past week, they’ve seen an 83% increase in cases.
L.A. County Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis stated, “Given that slightly under 4 million L.A. County residents are not vaccinated, the risk of increased spread of this variant within our county remains high.” With the new Delta variant rapidly spreading among the population, the city hopes to dramatically reduce the number of cases. The Delta variant is 50% more contagious than the Alpha variant. The Alpha variant was 50% more likely to spread than the original virus that was identified in China in 2019. The Delta variant now makes up 70% of Corona Virus cases according to Dr. Anissa Davis of Long Beach.
Los Angeles County hopes to mitigate losses and cases with their swift actions. The county doesn’t know when it will lift the mandate again. “We expect to keep this order in place until we begin to see improvements,” Davis said.
Long Beach runs its own health department and is following the lead of LA County. It is unknown if Pasadena will follow suit.
The death toll from the virus in LA County was 24,566 as of last Thursday. Orange County is at 5,136 deaths.
Though Orange Counties’ numbers aren’t close to Los Angeles’, they are still on the rise as well. Orange County reported 1,050 new cases of the virus in the last 7 days.
“I think this is an all-hands-on-deck moment,” Davis said. “We all need to do our part.”