SANTA ANA (CBSLA) — The Orange County Health Care Agency Friday reported 892 newly confirmed COVID-19 cases and one death, bringing countywide totals to 218,741 cases and 2,547 deaths.
And officials reported there were 1,896 COVID-19 patients hospitalized, 516 of whom were being treated in intensive care units.READ MORE: San Bernardino Surpasses 3K Total COVID-19 Deaths, Ventura Nears 900
The numbers all pointed to good news in the county’s fight against the pandemic, with daily case numbers, hospitalizations and positivity rates all on the decline.
“It’s a continuation of the trends we’ve seen,” Orange County CEO Frank Kim said. “What this tells me is that all of the indicators are consistent. The testing rate is still high, so these aren’t false numbers. Hospitalizations are down, the ICUs are trending down and the case positivity is coming down.”
On Jan. 10, the county’s test positivity rate was 19.7%. Less than two weeks later, it has dropped to 14.5%. But Kim cautioned that the numbers were still higher than they were before the latest surge.
“If you look at our numbers they’re still very high compared to where we were before early November and the holidays, so it’s not time to celebrate yet,” he said.READ MORE: New COVID Vaccine Site Opening At USC Campus, City Working To Get Doses To Homebound Residents
But officials are hopeful that the trends will continue as more O.C. residents and workers get vaccinated, including at Laguna Woods Village where 3,000 residents aged 75 and older are expected to get their first dose throughout the weekend.
“I want to kiss my husband,” Irene Marengo said when asked why she was getting the vaccine.
Healthcare workers from MemorialCare volunteered their time to help vaccinate the vulnerable residents of the senior community.
“These are all our healthcare workers,” Marcia Manker, CEO of Saddleback Hospital, said looking around the pop-up clinic. “They are in our hospitals watching the ravages of this disease, and so the more shots we can get into these arms today … it gives them hope for what we are facing.”
County officials also announced that a number of bugs in the Othena web and phone app used to make appointments had been ironed out, allowing for a smoother sign-up process.MORE NEWS: Poll: LA County Crime Victims Feel Criminal Justice System Failed Them
“We have a virtual queue now so the one issue we’ll get is people will get frustrated they’re not hearing from us because they’re number 250,000 in the queue,” Kim said. “But you no longer have to smash the buttons and try to get in when 3,000 slots open up.”