By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti pushed for city residents to take influenza precautions seriously, especially during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Garcetti said in a press conference on Wednesday that coronavirus numbers are “headed in the right direction” but could still use improvements, which rely on people continuing to follow their local health guidelines.

The mayor expressed concern about potentially overwhelmed health care systems if a lot of Angelenos become ill with both the flu and coronavirus, which can co-infect people.

To date, L.A. County has reported 256,148 coronavirus cases and 6,303 deaths since the pandemic began.

RELATED: Doctors Weigh In On How Coronavirus Precautions Impact Flu Season

The case rate and positive rate in the county continue to trend toward lower numbers but Garcetti warns that the improvements don’t mean that safety protocols should be abandoned.

“Positive trends don’t mean we’re out of the woods,” the mayor said.

Last month, doctors in the Southland weighed in on the impact of the flu and COVID-19 in the U.S. and if things could get better or worse.

Pasadena’s Public Health Director, Dr. Ying-Ying Goh, said that while countries like Brazil and Australia have seen fewer flu cases due to citizens taking extra safety precautions to prevent the coronavirus, the U.S. might not see the same fate.

“I feel that we can be cautiously optimistic but also follow the data day-by-day,” said Pasadena’s Public Health Director Ying-Ying Goh.

Health experts and scientists are continuing to encourage Americans to wear face coverings, avoid gatherings, maintain proper hand hygiene and get their annual flu vaccine.

Where to get a flu shot

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