COVID cases low in LA County, but numbers increasing in schools

Health officials say there have been 10 recent outbreaks, six of which occurred in one day.
LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Health officials in Los Angeles County say COVID-19 cases remain low, but there's a change happening.

"While we've seen significant decreases in COVID cases hospitalizations and deaths, our rates are beginning to level off and cases are no longer declining," said L.A. County Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer.

She said the new BA.2 subvariant is spreading fast.

It now accounts for 32% of specimens in the county. The omicron variant is still dominant but the question is for how long.

"BA.2 is more infectious than previous omicron strains. We do expect that BA.2 now accounts for an even higher proportion of COVID-19 cases in L.A. County. Increases in L.A. County do mirror patterns that we're seeing around the world," said Ferrer.

Plus, officials are also seeing an increase in cases in schools. Ferrer said there have been 10 recent outbreaks, six of which occurred on Monday - that's something officials are monitoring closely.

"For the 10 new outbreak investigations opened in the seven-day period between March 28 and April 3. Nine of the outbreaks happened in elementary school classrooms and there was one outbreak in high school," said Ferrer.

At the federal level, White House officials say they need more money in case there are new variants.

White House coronavirus response coordinator Jeff Zients said time is of the essence.

"We urge Congress to move promptly on the $10 billion emergency funding package developed in the Senate. The bill is a start. It should pass immediately," he said.

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