Los Angeles [US], November 15 (ANI/Xinhua): Los Angeles County, the most populous county in the United States, reported Saturday a record single-day increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases since the summer surge in July.
A total of 3,780 new cases and 20 new deaths were reported in the previous 24 hours, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.
"This marks the highest amount of positive cases in one day, not associated with a backlog of cases, since mid-July," said the department in a daily release, adding that the elevated number of cases reflects increased testing across the county.
Officials said that over 56,000 tests were processed on Friday, and the positivity rate remains high at almost 6 per cent.
The department has identified 336,549 positive cases countywide and a total of 7,266 deaths to date.
There were 966 people currently hospitalized with COVID-19, and 28 per cent of them are in the ICU, officials said, noting that current hospitalisation "is the highest it has been in nearly two months."
Younger people continue to drive the increase in community transmission in the county. Over 74 per cent of the new cases reported on Saturday are from people under 50 years of age, while 90 per cent of reported deaths on the day are the over-50s.
Officials noted that the rise in cases complicates planning for increasing the numbers of students returning to schools, further re-opening additional sectors and permitting additional activities.
"Many younger people are out socialising with non-household members, raising concerns that asymptomatic young people are helping to spread the virus to more vulnerable people at a time when cases are surging dangerously in the county," said the county's Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer in the release.
"While the effect of the coronavirus on younger people may not be significantly associated with deaths, younger people definitely act as a transmission connector to individuals at a higher risk. Spread among family members and at worksites will also increase considerably as we see more and more cases among our younger residents," she said.
Both Los Angeles County and the state of California are experiencing a surge in new cases. Authorities of California said Friday cases in the state have surpassed 1 million, becoming the second U.S. state to reach the bleak milestone. (ANI/Xinhua)