On Wednesday, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti warned that the city could be facing a second mandatory stay-at-home order if COVID-19 cases continued to grow.
LA’s COVID-19 threat level remains high
Mayor Garcetti utilized the cities recently unveiled color-coded COVID-19 threat level system, noting that the risk was still higher than usual.
“Today’s COVID-19 risk level remains at orange,” said Mayor Garcetti during the press conference. “That’s bad. That mans the risk is high and you should assume that everyone around you is infectious. Continue to stay home as often as you can and outside the home only participate in essential activities.
“If things get worse, that dial could move to red in this coming week or two. That would place us at the highest risk of infection, and we’d likely return to a mandated safer-at-home order. But, if things get better, we’ll see that dial back down to yellow, indicating we’re successfully flattening the curve again.”
Since June, LA County had had a rough daily average of 2,000 new COVID-19 cases, with a city total currently sitting at 125,000 cases. California has seen high numbers of new cases as well, with LA only contributing 25% of the state’s average of 8,000 new cases a day.
To combat the new cases, Mayor Garcetti also announced new testing recommendations. While testing is still considered very important for anyone who thinks that they have symptoms or are workers who are likely to see exposure, he encouraged all citizens Wednesday night to get tested, even those without symptoms. But he also warned that testing should not be an excuse for social gatherings.
“We are receiving reports people are getting tested so they can just go out, hang out with folks,” added Garcetti during the press conference. “That’s not what these tests are for. A COVID test isn’t an excuse to break the rules and engage in social gatherings outside your household. It’s not an excuse to not wear a mask and not maintain social distancing. A test is not a passport to party.”
18 to 40-year-olds become fastest growing COVID-19 contracting group
Health officials have noted the growing situation in Los Angeles with many noting the fact that younger people have been contracting COVID-19 at greater rates than in previous months. Mayor Garcetti even noted during he press conference that 50% of all new cases in LA have occurred in people between the ages of 18 and 40.
Angie Shelton, a nurse at a Los Angeles clinic who recently went on leave due to contracting COVID-19, told the California Globe about the situations in LA hospitals and clinics in recent weeks.
“We’ve seen younger people come in with positive results more and more,” explained Shelton. “Younger people had been going to parties and eating out more and not wearing face masks everywhere and we are now seeing the result.
In Los Angeles, we have to have this sort of warning system now, if only to illustrate how bad it is.
I got COVID-19 because of this despite precautions. We have to be smart about this or we’ll be confined to our homes again and it will take even longer to recover. Simple as that.”
Mayor Garcetti is likely to hold another press conference within a week with an update to the COVID-19 threat level situation in the city.