Infections tend to decline in OC, but nearly 300 people have died since Jan. 1 – Orange County Register

Following the post-holiday boom in coronavirus cases with the spread of the omicron variant, Orange County Deputy Health Director Dr. Regina Chinsio-Kwong called it “really good news” that COVID case rates -19 and the number of hospital admissions is continuing to decrease compared to before. some week.

Two weeks ago, more than 1,000 people were in OC hospitals with COVID-19; Chinsio-Kwong told the media in a phone conference on Wednesday the number had dropped to 617.

There were 1,441 new COVID-19 cases reported on Wednesday, down from 3,000 to 4,000 a day at the end of January.

But daily deaths for Orange County residents have been in double digits in recent weeks, after a lull with usually just a few coronavirus deaths a day from October through December.

On Wednesday, 60 new deaths were reported, but that includes previous deaths that took time to report to the OC Health Care Agency. While the actual number for that date is expected to be lower, Chinsio-Kwong said, “we know that we are likely to continue to see deaths” in the coming weeks. because of the sheer number of people infected with the omicron variant already. big.

Considering the cleaned up data (with deaths counted on the date of occurrence rather than when they were reported), Chinsio-Kwong said at least 291 Orange County residents have died from the virus since January 1.

Since deaths can follow infection for several weeks or so, she said, “I expect to see the high death toll continue for at least the next two months.”

Of those who died this year, 180 were unvaccinated; 82 people were vaccinated but did not get a booster; and 29 have been fully vaccinated and boosted, Chinsio-Kwong said. In that last group, all but two were older than 65 years of age.

She worries that people have become numb as the death toll continues to rise, with 6,265 OC residents having died since the pandemic broke out; After hearing the daily stats since the start of 2020, “it’s hard to tell someone” that those deaths are important and some are preventable, she said.

Chinsio-Kwong advises people to weigh their own risk factors as they decide whether to dine indoors, work out at the gym or go to other crowded places. The state’s indoor mask regulations will be raised next week for those who are vaccinated. Infections tend to decline in OC, but nearly 300 people have died since Jan. 1 – Orange County Register

Huynh Nguyen

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