By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

On Friday, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed five new deaths and 257 new cases of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Over the last 48 hours there have been 678 new cases.


To date, health officials identified 1465 cases across all areas of LA County, including 26 deaths. As of Friday, 317 positive cases (21% of positive cases) have been hospitalized.

In addition, a new Health Officer Order is being issued to temporarily close beaches and hiking trails due to recent dramatic increases in COVID-19 cases, and increased usage of beaches and hiking trails by many groups of people. County and City Parks may remain open for passive recreational activities. Persons using the parks are required to practice social distancing at all times. The Order is effective immediately and will continue through April 19.

“The crowds we saw at our beaches last weekend were unacceptable,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn. “In order to save lives, beaches in LA County will be temporarily closed. I understand that this is a huge sacrifice for everyone who enjoys going to our beaches. But we cannot risk another sunny weekend with crowds at the beach spreading this virus. This closure is temporary and we can always reopen these beaches when it is safe to do so.” “The new Health Officer Order is in line with our efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Los Angeles County. It is crucial that we limit access to non-essential places where crowds have been gathering,” said Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Los Angeles County Public Health Director. “Please practice social distancing when you do go outside to enjoy the beautiful weather. That means staying at least 6 feet away from other people.”