L.A. County strongly recommends indoor masking as COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations jump to historic highs
Linda Qiu, of Los Angeles, said she was out for a walk with her two daughters when she was first notified of an emerging flu-like respiratory illness at her workplace.
“When I saw it I knew what it was,” she said. “I figured I had it, but my doctor was very concerned.” Qiu said she had gotten tested for influenza three times, but had never had any complications.
But she got sick again a week later.
“That was when I started to realize what was going on,” she said. Her fever spiked to 38 degrees. “It wasn’t like flu, it was worse,” she said. “My throat started to close up, and my nose started to itch.”
She said she developed a cough and shortness of breath; she also developed a runny nose.
On Feb. 24, she was in the hospital.
“I never thought it could get like this,” Qiu said.
L.A. County health officials have confirmed more than 300 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in its first three weeks. In another first, the first confirmed case was on Feb. 28. The county is currently tracking more than 1,700 people with illnesses like Qiu’s. That’s the highest county confirmed cases for a single day. This is the highest-ever county-wide confirmed cases for a single day.
“This is a new pattern that we’ve never seen before,” said Dr. Judy Gershwin, medical director of L.A. County’s Department of Public Health. L.A. County saw more than 10,000 hospital admissions over the first two weeks of February.
“We’re seeing a lot of cases, a lot of increase in hospitalizations as well,” Gershwin said. “We’re hopeful of a slow, steady decrease in both.�