Homeless Shelter Worker Among 25 New LA County Coronavirus Deaths; Mortality Rate Ticks Up Again

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Another 25 people have died of the coronavirus in Los Angeles County, officials reported Thursday, including a staff member of a local homeless shelter.

A man rides a bicycle in front of a row of homeless tents above a freeway on April 7, 2020, in Los Angeles. (Getty Images)

Along with the 25 deaths, there were also 425 new cases, bringing L.A. County’s total number of coronavirus cases to 7,955, with 223 deaths from the disease.

L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer reported that the county’s death rate is now 2.8 percent, up from 2.6 percent on Wednesday.

There are now 20 confirmed cases among the county’s homeless population, Ferrer said, up from 12 on Wednesday. Of those 20, all but four were not in shelters. Ferrer confirmed that an employee at a local homeless shelter died from the disease.

“I know you all join me in expressing our deep condolences and gratitude to this person’s family,” she said. “We’re so very sorry for your loss.”

There have been 716 positive COVID-19 cases in “institutional settings,” which include nursing homes, assisted living facilities, jails, prisons, homeless shelters, treatment centers and supporting living facilities. 51 residents who live in institutional settings have died. Most of these are elderly people in assisted living and nursing facilities.

More than 38,300 people in L.A. County have been tested, with that number expected to rise considerably as more drive-thru sites continue to open across the region and more tests become available.

Meanwhile, there are 27 confirmed coronavirus cases among L.A. County Sheriff’s Department staff, Ferrer disclosed. There are 447 LASD staff members currently under quarantine, while 188 have returned to work.