City Official: Local COVID Hospitalizations Fall

Hospitalizations due to COVID-19 are dropping in Burbank and Los Angeles County, a municipal official announced recently, and daily cases in the city also seem to be falling.
The availability of hospital beds in the county system has increased by about 15% in recent weeks, emergency management coordinator Eric Baumgardner told the City Council on Tuesday. He said he believes the increase reflects a decrease in hospitalizations caused by the novel coronavirus.
On Thursday, the county Department of Public Health said 1,481 people were hospitalized with the coronavirus. The total was 2,056 a month prior.
The public hospitalization figure for Burbank also dipped slightly, Baumgardner said, with the most recent data from Providence St. Joseph Medical Center showing that 11% of its patients have the virus, compared to 13% two weeks before the reporting date.
“Our numbers in Burbank are looking fairly well,” Baumgardner told council members.
New COVID-19 cases also seem to be declining, though county Public Health has warned that cases from a recent system backlog are starting to file in.
Despite this, according to the most recent data published on the county’s website as of press time on Friday, Burbank’s seven-day average of new daily cases had dropped by about 40% compared to the same period last month, from about 15 cases per day to nine — the lowest the average had been since June 30.
Fifty-four deaths due to the coronavirus have been reported in Burbank.
As county health officials did not say when they expected the backlog to fully empty, it is not clear whether Burbank’s case count of 1,134 could be an underestimate.
The backlog is not believed to affect other indicators such as deaths — which for L.A. County were listed at 5,171 as of press time Friday — and hospitalizations.
There were also 216,139 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the county.
An outbreak investigation was also recently closed at the Burbank Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, which as of Aug. 2 was linked to 20 of the city’s COVID-19 deaths and more than a hundred of its cases.
A spokesperson from county Public Health said in an email that the agency declared the outbreak investigation closed on July 21.
“Facilities are required to test all staff and residents (not already known to be positive) weekly,” the spokesperson wrote. “When there are no new positive tests identified in residents for two consecutive rounds, [the Department of Public Health’s Outbreak Management Bureau] deems a facility cleared of the outbreak and DPH closes the investigation.”
The outbreak investigation was one of 550 closed as of Thursday, with about 890 investigations still ongoing, according to the department.

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