The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has issued a COVID-19 update urging residents to get vaccinated and boosted to provide protection against the more infectious subvariants and sub-lineages of COVID-19.
According to the department, for the week ending April 16, Omicron accounted for 100% of genetically sequenced cases, with BA.2 lineage and sub-lineages accounting for 96% of that total.
While BA.2 is among the most infectious mutations of COVID-19 to date, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the new sub-lineage BA.2.12.1 may be 25% more transmissible than BA.2. In Los Angeles County, for the week ending April 16, 8% of positive sequenced specimens were identified as BA.2.12.1.
With the highly infectious subvariants and sub-lineages in circulation, cases are increasing in L.A. County.
To date, the increases in case numbers have not translated to increases in severe illness, with hospitalizations and deaths remaining low and decreasing. From May 4 to 11, the average number of hospitalized cases per day was 245, similar to hospitalization numbers one month ago.
Health officials continue to remind the public that getting vaccinated, getting boosted, getting tested and masking-up as preventive steps remain critical in the fight against the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. To find a vaccination site or to make an appointment, visit vaccinatelacounty.com.
COVID-19 testing remains widely available across the county. Residents should first call their healthcare provider for a COVID-19 test. For people who cannot get a test through a health care provider, free testing is available. For additional information, visit covid19.lacounty.gov/testing.
Los Angeles County coordinates a COVID-19 West Hollywood testing site at Plummer Park, 7377 Santa Monica Blvd. The testing site is open each week from Tuesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and is adjacent to the community center in the south parking lot. Tests are being administered by Fulgent Genetics, and advance appointments must be made at la.fulgentgenetics.com. People getting tests should bring ID and a confirmation number to the appointment.
Los Angeles County Health Services has launched a pick-up COVID-19 testing kit program that allows residents to pick up a PCR test kit and return it at designated locations, which include the COVID-19 West Hollywood testing site at Plummer Park. There are also programs at 14 L.A. County library sites, including the West Hollywood Library.
Additional information, such as links to West Hollywood-area drug store chains offering vaccinations, is available at weho.org/coronavirus.
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