LAKE FOREST, CA — Orange County officials reported 32 new coronavirus cases in Lake Forest on Wednesday, among the 1,333 new cases across Orange County. Wednesday's update raised Orange County's total since the pandemic began to 20,225 cases, including seven more deaths, hiking the death toll to 376.
Lake Forest has now confirmed 269 total cases of COVID-19.
The number of hospitalized patients jumped from 659 Tuesday to 679, and the number of patients in intensive care rose from 224 to 234, according to the Orange County Health Care Agency.
"The numbers are going to stay high for the next seven days," Orange County CEO Frank Kim told City News Service on Tuesday.
The rise in infections were expected as officials relaxed restrictions on economic activity, Kim said. But there has been a significant rise in infections in the 25-to-34 age group, Kim said.
"They're number one with a bullet," Kim said.
That might explain why the intensive-care unit has not been affected as much at hospitals, Kim said.
"They do end up in a hospital, but not in the ICU, so that is a conclusion you could draw, but we don't know yet that is true," Kim said, adding that it is difficult to determine because officials lack the data.
"When people are bad they don't admit their poor behavior" to contact tracers, Kim said, referring to risky behavior such as partying with friends and refusing to wear a mask.
Orange County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett on Monday said Memorial Day weekend gatherings and protests stemming from the George Floyd killing in Minnesota likely led to such a marked increase in spread of the infection.
On June 18, there were six specimens that led to COVID-19 positive diagnoses, but by June 24 there were 125. The number steadily climbed to 196 on June 26 and then trended down again.
In Orange County, here are Wednesday’s coronavirus totals by city:
Aliso Viejo: 145
Buena Park: 559
Costa Mesa: 612
Coto de Caza: 11
Dana Point: 78
Fountain Valley: 186
Garden Grove: 1,064
Huntington Beach: 993
La Habra: 421
La Palma: 66
Ladera Ranch: 59
Laguna Beach: 82
Laguna Hills: 117
Laguna Niguel: 142
Laguna Woods: 24
Lake Forest: 269
Los Alamitos: 113
Midway City: 45
Mission Viejo: 297
Newport Beach: 494
Rancho Mission Viejo: 29
Rancho Santa Margarita: 118
Rossmoor: 22 (no change)
San Clemente: 155
San Juan Capistrano: 128
Santa Ana: 3,930
Seal Beach: 136
Trabuco Canyon: 72
Villa Park: 31 (no change)
Yorba Linda: 251
Since the pandemic began, 1,267 of the county's infections were from skilled nursing facilities, 416 were from the county's jails, and 111 were transients.
Of those who died, 194 were from skilled nursing facilities, 14 were from assisted living facilities and two were transients. Three of the seven reported fatalities since Tuesday were from skilled nursing facilities.
In the county's jails, 390 of the 416 infected since the pandemic began have recovered, but 26 are in medical isolation with symptoms and authorities are awaiting results of 46 tests.
County officials reported that they have performed 285,482 COVID-19 tests, with 9,174 documented recoveries.
The county's case and hospitalization rate has kept it on the state's watch list, which will continue to prevent the county from reopening inside dining at restaurants and bars, among other businesses that were closed to help tamp down the surge of infections.
The county's case rate rose from 222 per 100,000 on Tuesday to 237.9, much higher than the state's preferred target of 25 per 100,000. The rate of testing positive for COVID-19 rose from 14.2% to 14.9%, higher than the state threshold of 8%.
The county's intensive care unit beds available declined from 40.2% on Tuesday to 39.6%, which is better than the state standard of 20%.
The percent of ventilators available decreased from 66.7% Tuesday to 65.8% Wednesday, much better than the state standard of 25%.
The change in the three-day average of increased hospitalized patients decreased from 10.6% to 9.4%, which is just under the 10% state standard.
Kim said hospital officials have told him as recently as Friday that while they are still preparing for a surge they are not sounding any alarms about being able to handle the increases in patients.
"For sure they're managing bed capacity, but they didn't seem freaked out," Kim said.
City News Service contributed to this report.
Full coronavirus coverage: Coronavirus In California: What To Know