“I don’t think the state’s hospital admissions have increased as it has in the past 24 hours,” said California director of health and human services, Dr. Mark Ghaly. “I hope but don’t expect it to be the highest we will ever have.”
There were 15,329 new Covid-19 cases daily in California on Tuesday. That’s little less than an all-time high of 15,442 on Saturday. “We know this number a lot [early in the week] is usually lower because of the weekend, but it’s still close to our highest daily case number, ”noted Ghaly. He found that the 7-day average is over 12,500 cases per day.
The state delivered a record number of tests on Monday, lowering the positivity rate in general. However, the 14 day test positivity rate is 5.6%. In two weeks that’s 51% more. The 7-day test positivity score is 5.9%, which indicates that infections will occur even as the tests increase.
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However, the hospital data is even more worrying. The daily number of hospitalizations for the virus in California has increased 81% in the past 14 days to 6,641.
Ghaly recalled that today’s hospitalizations are the result of the number of infections that occurred two weeks earlier. So the patients on Tuesday are based on a 7,000 sample size that we saw on November 10th. The daily number of new cases on Tuesday was 15,329, more than double what it was two weeks ago. “We are concerned,” said Ghaly of what lies ahead.
Covid-19-related hospital stays have impacted 12% of daily infection rates, according to Ghaly and others. This means that the number of new hospitalizations resulting from the new case number on Tuesday will be 1,839. The number of new hospitalizations due to the new cases on Saturday will be 1,853 in two weeks.
According to Governor Gavin Newsom, 44,369 of the state’s 73,867 hospital beds were occupied as of Monday – see chart below. That seems like a good pillow, but after just one week of additions in the 1,800 range, another 12,600 beds are occupied. Two weeks at this rate, another 25,200 beds are occupied. If you add that to Monday’s total, roughly 70,000 of the state’s 73,867 beds would be full. And these are just Covid-19 cases. This number does not take into account the usual daily demand of the state due to other diseases.
It is now planned that additional beds will be opened if necessary. However, according to Newsom last week, that number was just over 1,800. That is currently enough for an increase of just one day in Covid 19 patients.
Intensive care unit admissions, which are a subset of hospital stays, have increased 57% over the past 14 days, Ghaly said. State intensive care units “are already under significant pressure,” he said.
Check out Ghaly’s presentation below.