COVID-19 hospitalizations dropped below 1,000 in Los Angeles County on Saturday, the first time that has happened since Nov. 23. According to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, there were 979 people with COVID-19 hospitalized Saturday, 29% in the I.C.U. That number further decreased Sunday when 951 people were hospitalized with COVID-19, 30% in the I.C.U.
Though hospitalizations remain high, the news is encouraging and came as health officials updated the Los Angeles County Health Officer Order to align with the state’s guidelines for counties in the red tier.
Effective Monday, the following are permitted, with additional safety modifications:
- Museum, zoos and aquariums can open indoors at 25% capacity.
- Gyms,fitness centers, yoga and dance studios can open indoors at 10% capacity with masking requirement for all indoor activities.
- Movie theatres can open indoors at 25% capacity with reserved seating only where each group is seated with at least 6 feet of distance in all directions between any other groups.
- Retail andpersonal care services can increase capacity to 50% with masking required at all times and for all services.
- Restaurantscan open indoors at 25% max capacity under the following conditions: 8 feet distancing between tables; one household per indoor table with a limit of six people; the HVAC system is in good working order and has been evaluated, and to the maximum extent possible ventilation has been increased. Public Health strongly recommends that all restaurant employees interacting with customers indoors are provided with additional masking protection (above the currently required face shield over face masks); this can be fit tested N95 masks, KN95 masks, or double masks, in addition to the required face shield. L.A. County Public Health also strongly recommends that all employees working indoors are informed about and offered opportunities to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Outdoor dining can accommodate up to six people per table from three different households.
- Indoorshopping malls can increase capacity to 50% with common areas remaining closed; food courts can open at 25% capacity adhering to the restaurant guidance for indoor dining.
- Institutes ofhigher education can reopen all permitted activities with required safety modifications except for residential housing which remains under current restrictions for the Spring semester.
- Schoolsare permitted to reopen for in-person instruction for students in seventh through 12th grades adhering to all state and county directives.
- Private gatherings can occur indoors with up to three separate households, with masking and distancing required at all times. People who are fully vaccinated can gather in small numbers indoors with other people who are fully vaccinated without required masking and distancing.
Businesses that are allowed to reopen are required to implement all public health protocols before reopening to ensure compliance and to avoid citations, fines and possible closure. L.A. County public health inspectors will continue to review compliance with the health officer order, identify violations, and may issue citations or temporarily close business not in accordance.