By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Los Angeles County Sunday reported 1,313 new cases of COVID-19 and 22 additional deaths.

In addition, the number of coronavirus patients in L.A. County hospitals continued to fall, dropping to 1,132, according to state health officials.

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Meanwhile, in what county officials hope is the beginning of the end of severe COVID-19 vaccine shortages, the county will receive its largest vaccine allotment to date this week with nearly two-thirds of the supply being used to administer first doses.

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“Vaccines are our ticket to ending the pandemic, saving lives, rebuilding our communities, and delivering hope for a healthier future,” LA Mayor Eric Garcetti said. “We still have a long way to go to safely and swiftly vaccinate as many Angelenos as possible — and a larger, steadier supply of doses this week means we can bring relief to more seniors, frontline and essential workers, and anyone eligible to receive a vaccine in our city.”

The increase in doses is welcome news in a county with increasingly large numbers of residents eligible to receive shots. Roughly 1.7 million essential workers, including teachers, became eligible this week, on top of the health care workers and residents aged 65 and over who were already eligible.

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Starting March 15, the county will adhere to new state guidance that expands eligibility to those aged 16 to 64 with an underlying health condition that makes them susceptible to severe illness or death from COVID-19.