LA County COVID-19 transmission rate increases, prompts concern about possible surge

L.A. County's recent COVID-19 transmission rate may be an indication that another surge may be starting.
LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Los Angeles County may be moving in the wrong direction again regarding the coronavirus after weeks of steady improvement.

The county is seeing several promising statistics when it comes to potentially moving to a less restrictive tier on the state's coronavirus monitoring plan, but health officials are keeping a close eye on one metric that may be pointing to a possible surge.

So far this week, the COVID-19 transmission rate in L.A. County has crept above 1, meaning infected people are passing the virus on to slightly more than just one other person. It may be an indication that another surge may be starting.

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Patients with COVID-19 experience mild to severe respiratory illnesses.

"We're watching to see if it's going to continue to head up in that direction, if it's going to speed up or slow down, but its is always going to be a concern, especially as we start to open up more," said Dr. Muntu Davis, county health officer.

Currently, the county is in the purple tier, the state's most restrictive stage.

Meanwhile, the pandemic is landing the Los Angeles Unified School District in court.

Nine parents, along with two educational non-profits, are suing the district, alleging it's online learning program is failing and depriving countless students of the education they need.

LAUSD superintendent Austin Beutner said the health risks of the coronavirus needs to be balanced with the learning needs of students.

"We can't compromise on the health and safety of the school community," Beutner said.
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