Nine people have died of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County in the past 24 hours, local officials said today. That is the most for a single day in the region and brings the death toll to 21.
Dr. Barbara Ferrer, the county’s director of Public Health, also said that 421 new cases were reported since Wednesday’s update.
“We have to assume that the spread of COVID-19 is throughout Los Angeles County,” Ferrer said, adding that if the pace continues, “there could be over a million people infected” in the region. Of those patients, some 200,000 of those would require hospitalization, she said.
During today’s update that was livestreamed on Facebook, Ferrer said the total number of confirmed coronavirus infections in L.A. County is 1216, with the increase attributed to more testing and test results being processed. She added that 9,400 people in the region have been tested so far.
Officials said the Los Angeles Convention Center soon will be used for “non-licensed” care of COVID-19 patients, such as quarantines and recovery. They are expecting equipment to be delivered on Saturday but couldn’t provide a hard date for when the facility will open to accept patients.
Officials today again stressed the importance of social distancing and “flattening the curve” of coronavirus infections.
Kathryn Barger, chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, urged residents to stay home but continue to patronize local businesses by ordering takeout food and buying online from area retailers.