WORLD California becomes first U.S. state to surpass 2 million COVID-19 cases


California becomes first U.S. state to surpass 2 million COVID-19 cases


17:52, December 25, 2020

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 24 (Xinhua) -- California on Thursday became the first state in the United States to surpass 2 million COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, said authorities.

Medical workers prepare to manually prone a COVID-19 patient in an intensive care unit at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in the Mission Hills section of Los Angeles, Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020. (Photo: AP)

The California Department of Public Health confirmed 39,070 new COVID-19 infections and 351 additional deaths in a daily release, pushing its cumulative cases up to 2,003,146, and related deaths to 23,635 in the most populous U.S. state.

There are 18,875 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized in the state, and 3,962 of them are in intensive care units (ICU). The seven-day positivity rate is 12.1 percent and the 14-day positivity rate is 12.4 percent, according to the department.

Meanwhile, the 11-county Southern California region and the 12-county San Joaquin Valley region in Central California are at zero available ICU capacity. The two regions are home to around 33 million people in the state, representing 84 percent of the state's population.

ICU capacity in the Bay Area, Greater Sacramento Region and Northern California region has dropped to 9.24 percent, 15.3 percent and 27.5 percent, respectively.

Based on current ICU data, San Joaquin Valley, Southern California, Greater Sacramento and the Bay Area are under the regional stay at home order.

These regions would remain lockdown for at least three weeks and be eligible to exit the order only if ICU capacity projections for the following month are above or equal to 15 percent, according to the state's authorities.

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