Published On: Thu, Jul 22nd, 2021

COVID-19 Rates and Hospitalizations Continue to Climb

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SANTA ANA—Hospitalizations for COVID-19 increased again in Orange County as the Delta variant continues to fuel a resurgence of infections. The county reported 290 more infections, raising the total since the start of the pandemic to 259,985. Hospitalizations increased from 126 on July 20 to 143 on July 21, with the number of intensive care unit patients dropping from 59 to 35. “Basically, this is Delta,” said Andrew Noymer, an epidemiologist and University of California–Irvine professor of population health and disease prevention, on the rising number of cases. “The fall has come early because we have a more transmissible variant.” Public health professionals had expected a mild summer because of vaccination rates and more outdoor activity, but that cases would increase when the temperature drops and more people head indoors and children return to school. “COVID was ultimately going to be a seasonal phenomenon,” Noymer said. “But last summer we …

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