Los Angeles City Coronavirus Update: Mayor Eric Garcetti Warns Of Possible New Stay-At-Home Order; “All Options” On Table

Los Angeles City Coronavirus Update: Mayor Eric Garcetti Warns Of Possible New Stay-At-Home Order; “All Options” On Table

Los Angeles City Mayor Eric Garcetti began his Wednesday coronavirus press conference with some good news, and then a warning.

“We are making progress,” said the mayor, “and while it is fragile, it is progress.”

Noting that Los Angeles as seeing the highest level of hospitalizations since the pandemic began, Garcetti warned, “These [next two] weeks are absolutely critical. Critical to whether our schools open, whether our economy thrives.”

He reminded residents that “All options remain on the table. We will do whatever we need to.”

If things get worse, said Garcetti, “We’d likely return to a mandated stay-at-home order,” in one or two weeks.

“There are still too many social gatherings. Way too many pool parties,” he said.

Los Angeles County Coronavirus Update: New Cases, Hospitalizations Now Regularly Averaging Close To All-Time Record As Test Positivity Rate Soars Again

“Parents, I need your help,” enjoined the mayor. “I need you to keep your children away from their friends.”

As a general guideline, Garcetti advised, “You should assume that everyone around you is infected.”

“Testing remains a critical tool,” he said.

“We hear very single day that there are not enough tests,” said the mayor, before announcing that the city and county had performed a record 20,000 tests on Wednesday. But that’s not enough, Garcetti admitted. In a city of 4 million people, however, that’s still not enough. “We need more help with testing.”

“Without a major boost in testing,” continued the mayor, “there’s no way we can safely reopen our economy or to safely reopen schools.”

He then called for federal help: “Congress and the president need to step up and pass another aid bill.”

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Tuesday confirmed 4,015 new cases of COVID-19, the region’s highest number of new cases reported since the pandemic began. The high number of cases is due, in part, to a backlog of about 2,000 test results received from one lab that just submitted lab results from July 2-5 today.

Testing results are available for more than 1.2 million individuals with 9% of those people testing positive. The daily positivity rate of all tests — a composite of a seven-day rolling average — has risen to 11.6%. On Monday, that seven-day average was pegged at 10%. A back of the envelope calculation shows L.A.’s one-day test positivity rate is 16 percent.

On Wednesday, California Hospital Association President and CEO Carmela Coyle offered a grim update from the medical community. “We’re preparing to surge,” she said. And with good reason.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom then announced a mind-boggling number of new coronavirus cases in the state. Over the previous 24 hours, California saw 11,694 new cases, which includes a backlog of cases from Los Angeles County.

Testing backlogs have spiked the state’s daily new-case numbers before, but Wednesday’s number so far exceeds the state’s previous all-time high of 7,149 reported on June 24 that it cannot be ignored.