OC Reports 59 New COVID-19 Cases Today, More Than 4,400 Total Cases

CNS News
May 19, 2020 - 10:21 am
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SANTA ANA (CNS) - Orange County's coronavirus figures stand at 4,434 cases and 88 deaths today after officials reported 59 new coronavirus cases but no additional fatalities.

   As of Monday, 194 patients were hospitalized, down from 201 on Sunday, with the number in intensive care remaining at 78, according to the Orange County Health Care Agency.

   A total of 80,533 people have been tested for COVID-19 in the county.

   Of the county's total cases, 3% involve people under 18 years old; 10% are 18-24; 18% are 25-34; 15% are 35-44; 18% are 45-54; 16% are 55-64; 10% are 65-74; 7% are 75-84; and 5% are 85 and older.

   Of the patients who died, 2% were 25-34 years old, 5% were 35-44, 9% were 45-54, 13% were 55-64, 16% were 65-74, 32% were 75-84, and 24% were 85 or older.

   Men make up 53% of the county's cases and 58% of its fatalities.

   Latinos account for 40% of the fatalities and whites 32%, followed by Asians with 19%. According to the OCHCA, 3% were black, 1% were native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, 1% are mixed race, 1% is unknown, and 2% fall into the category of  "other."

   Santa Ana has the most cases in the county with 744, followed by Anaheim with 701 and Huntington Beach with 291.

   Orange County Sheriff's Department officials announced 350 inmates have tested positive since March, with 196 having recovered and others asymptomatic. Eleven of the inmates are currently sick and in medical isolation. Officials are awaiting the results of 86 tests.

   Orange County officials reported 523 patients in skilled nursing home facilities have tested positive for COVID-19 and 28 have died; and 241 staff workers have contracted the coronavirus, with one dying.

   Gov. Gavin Newsom's announcement Monday on loosening restrictions that would allow most of the state's counties to reopen businesses in his phase 2 plan have Orange County officials optimistic of reopening those businesses by this weekend at the earliest.

   Late last week, county officials announced a partnership with UC Irvine to conduct a survey to get a better handle on coronavirus-related statistics that could help with quarantine programs and easing of restrictions.

   UCI researchers will use serology tests of 5,000 residents to see if they have developed antibodies as a result of infection. The aim is to better focus on at-risk populations and to understand how long immunity to COVID-19 may last.

   UCI assistant professor of public health and epidemiology Daniel Parker said the effort will create a baseline of data that can be used if other surveys are done later.

   "We want to get a snapshot of how many people have been exposed to it in the community," Parker said. "It gives us how many people were asymptomatic, and to start with that's useful in itself if it's a really big number."

   Orange County so far has been "relatively lucky" when compared to other Southland counties, Parker said.

   "My hunch is there will be some immunity, but it won't last forever," he said.

   To plan the next steps needed to manage the virus, officials need to know how many people have been exposed to it, Parker said.