Orange County sees improvement in COVID-19 transmission rates

A view of the entrance to Disneyland Park, which has been closed since March 14 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A view of the entrance to Disneyland Park, which has been closed since March 14 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The chief executive of Disney says it’s hoped the park will reopen in late April.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Orange County showed improvement in updated numbers tracking transmission of the coronavirus.

The Orange County Health Care Agency released data Tuesday that indicates the county is now meeting criteria for the state’s less restrictive red tier across three metrics used to track virus transmission.

The adjusted daily case rate per 100,000 residents dropped from 7.6 cases to 6.0 cases. For a county to be considered for the red tier, it must have an adjusted daily case rate of seven or fewer.


As it was already doing so last week, the county continues to sport numbers that qualify for the orange tier for its testing positivity rate and its health equity quartile positivity rate. The testing positivity rate for the county is 3.2%, and the health equity quartile positivity rate is 4.1%. All three statistics are kept as a seven-day average with a seven-day lag.

“Before Orange County can move to the red tier, we must meet certain benchmarks set by the state regarding daily case rate, positivity rate, and health equity rate for two consecutive weeks, which we’re on track to meet,” Andrew Do, chairman of the Orange County Board of Supervisors, said in a statement.

“Thanks to the diligence of our residents and business operators, we’re on the cusp of moving to the red tier, but we must remember to not let our guard down and continue adhering to local health guidance.”

County officials added that the earliest that Orange County could advance from the most-restrictive purple tier to the red tier is March 17.

Disney CEO Bob Chapek said at a shareholders meeting Tuesday that he is hopeful that Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park can open by late April. Upon opening, the theme parks would only be accessible to in-state visitors.

New reopening guidance would allow for theme parks whose counties are in the red tier to entertain visitors up to 15% of their capacity. Attendance could go up to 25% in the orange tier and 35% in the least-restrictive yellow tier.

In Orange County, there have been 4,313 lives lost to COVID-19, and there have been 248,022 people reported to have been infected by the virus.

The county currently has 283 COVID-19 hospitalizations, with 77 of those patients being treated in intensive care units.

There were 6,052 tests for the virus reported by the county on Tuesday, bringing the total number of tests administered to 3,125,408.

The healthcare agency estimates that there have been 237,416 people countywide who have made a recovery after contracting the virus.

Here are the latest cumulative coronavirus case counts and COVID-19 deaths for select cities in Orange County:

  • Santa Ana: 44,218 cases; 766 deaths
  • Anaheim: 41,098 cases; 761 deaths
  • Huntington Beach: 10,344 cases; 193 deaths
  • Costa Mesa: 8,726 cases; 116 deaths
  • Irvine: 10,226 cases; 77 deaths
  • Newport Beach: 3,636 cases; 69 deaths
  • Fountain Valley: 3,412 cases; 70 deaths
  • Laguna Beach: 804 cases; five deaths

Here are the case counts by age group, followed by deaths:

  • 0 to 17: 25,737 cases; one death
  • 18 to 24: 34,241 cases; nine deaths
  • 25 to 34: 49,386 cases; 42 deaths
  • 35 to 44: 38,611 cases; 93 deaths
  • 45 to 54: 39,793 cases; 276 deaths
  • 55 to 64: 31,298 cases; 596 deaths
  • 65 to 74: 15,597 cases; 834 deaths
  • 75 to 84: 7,893 cases; 1,061 deaths
  • 85 and older: 5,300 cases; 1,401 deaths

Updated figures are posted daily at Information on COVID-19 vaccines in Orange County can be found at

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