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Orange County reports four new coronavirus deaths amid rise in hospitalized patients

Officers and protesters find a shady spot Saturday along Pacific Coast Highway in Laguna Beach.
Officers and protesters find a shady spot Saturday along Pacific Coast Highway in Laguna Beach.
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

Orange County health officials Tuesday reported four additional coronavirus-linked fatalities, as the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 countywide surpassed 200 for the second time in less than a week.

The four new deaths brought the region’s toll to 61. Of those who have died, 11 were residents in skilled nursing facilities, according to the Orange County Health Care Agency.

The county also confirmed an additional 69 coronavirus infections Tuesday, bringing its total to 2,873 since the pandemic began. Of those who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, 251 live in a skilled nursing facility, and 143 are inmates in the Orange County jail system, according to the agency.

The number of new COVID-19 cases announced in the latest update was the lowest since April 28. The county has seen its daily caseload swell in recent days as it has significantly increased testing. The county, which has tested more than 39,000 people, reported more than 2,000 tests on Tuesday alone.

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The number of people diagnosed with COVID-19 who are hospitalized has grown over the past week. It appeared to peak on Friday at 202 before declining slightly over the weekend. But as of Monday, the number of hospitalizations again surpassed 200. Sixty-two people are in intensive care units, according to county data.

Still, the county’s observed mortality rate associated with COVID-19 is about 2%, roughly half that of neighboring Los Angeles County and the state.

As a heat wave bears down on Southern California this week, attention has been focused on the county’s beaches. Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered a hard closure of Orange County’s sandy stretches last week after thousands of visitors flocked to the shore despite California’s stay-at-home order.

The move prompted condemnation from local officials and outrage from some members of the public who organized protests to urge the governor to loosen stay-at-home regulations and jump-start the economy.

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State officials this week agreed to allow five cities — Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Seal Beach, Dana Point and San Clemente — to reopen their beaches with the stipulation that visitors remain active. Sunbathing is not permitted, and some cities have instituted limited hours as part of the agreement with the state.

On Tuesday, the Orange County Board of Supervisors voted to submit a plan to the state that would also allow county-operated beaches to reopen for active recreation.

“We want people to walk and jog and run and enjoy water sports but to keep moving,” Supervisor Lisa Bartlett said, “and the state is fully behind that.”

Here’s the latest COVID-19 information for Orange County.

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Age breakdown of cases:
0-17 — 60
18-24 — 274
25-34 — 528
35-44 — 425
45-54 — 529
55-64 — 474
65-74 — 285
75-84 — 178
85+ — 118

Age breakdown of deaths:
25-34 — 2
35-44 — 3
45-54 — 5
55-64 — 8
65-74 — 11
75-84 — 19
85+ — 13

Cases by community:
Aliso Viejo — 18
Anaheim — 428
Brea — 21
Buena Park — 95
Costa Mesa — 42
Coto de Caza — 5
Cypress — 44
Dana Point — 22
Fountain Valley — 36
Fullerton — 101
Garden Grove — 143
Huntington Beach — 230
Irvine — 137
La Habra — 57
La Palma — 15
Ladera Ranch — 11
Laguna Beach — 38
Laguna Hills — 22
Laguna Niguel — 32
Laguna Woods — 8
Lake Forest — 32
Los Alamitos — 32
Midway City — 7
Mission Viejo — 47
Newport Beach — 102
Orange — 128
Placentia — 64
Rancho Mission Viejo — 6
Rancho Santa Margarita — 14
San Clemente — 49
San Juan Capistrano — 29
Santa Ana — 433
Seal Beach — 11
Stanton — 28
Trabuco Canyon — 12
Tustin — 45
Villa Park — 5
Westminster — 47
Yorba Linda — 52
Other — 147
Unknown — 78

Note: The “other” category includes unincorporated areas. Daily updates are preliminary and subject to change as the county receives new information.


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