COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are still increasing locally, although community transmission rates of the virus remain low, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Coachella Valley is also continuing its upward trend in cases. The nine cities in the Coachella Valley added 841 new COVID-19 cases in the eight days ended Wednesday. Four deaths were also reported during this period, with Cathedral City, Indio, La Quinta, and Palm Springs each reporting one.
Here’s a full breakdown of total confirmed cases, deaths, and recoveries by city since the pandemic began (with weekly changes in parentheses):
- cathedral city: 12,583 confirmed cases (+102), 151 deaths (+1), 12,347 recoveries (+109)
- Coachella: 13,062 confirmed cases (+91), 121 deaths (+0), 12,857 recoveries (+72)
- Hot springs in the desert: 7,857 confirmed cases (+53), 99 deaths (+0), 7,721 recoveries (+49)
- Indian Wells: 630 confirmed cases (+13), 8 deaths (+0), 612 recoveries (+14)
- Indian: 22,849 confirmed cases (+185), 281 deaths (+1), 22,404 recoveries (+175)
- Quinta: 8,174 confirmed cases (+120), 83 deaths (+1), 7,999 recoveries (+111)
- palm desert: 9,557 confirmed cases (+140), 148 deaths (+0), 9,289 recoveries (+113)
- Palm Springs: 8,107 confirmed cases (+98), 157 deaths (+1), 7,868 recoveries (+108)
- Rancho Mirage: 2,731 confirmed cases (+39), 56 deaths (+0), 2,650 recoveries (+57)
Riverside County added 2,452 COVID-19 cases between Friday and Wednesday.
Though cases in Riverside County continue to rise, the CDC says the region has low levels of community transmission. People “can always choose to wear a mask,” but those with symptoms, who test positive, or those who have been exposed to COVID-19 should wear a mask, according to the CDC.
Riverside County hospitalizations also increased starting Friday. There were 93 patients on Wednesday, 13 more than on Friday. That number also includes 9 people in intensive care, an increase of four people since Friday.
During Tuesday’s Desert Healthcare District meeting, Linda Evans, chief strategy officer of community advocacy for the Desert Care Network, said the three local hospitals are seeing a “slight surge” in COVID-19 positive patients. 11 patients were hospitalized at Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, one at JFK Memorial in Indio and zero at Hi-Desert Medical Center in Joshua Tree.
“It’s obviously not as bad as previous waves, but we remain aware and diligent,” Evans said.
Eisenhower Health reported about 20 patients Tuesday, according to statistics on the hospital’s website.
Riverside County added six deaths since Friday, bringing the total to 6,538 deaths since the pandemic began.
In Riverside County, as of May 17, 62.5% of residents age 5 and older are fully vaccinated and another 6.5% are partially vaccinated. Approximately 32.9% of the population 12 years and older have received an additional/booster vaccination.
Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine appears to be safe and effective for children ages 6 months to 5 years, according to a company study released early Monday.
The study of nearly 1,700 children showed the vaccine was as safe as placebo and more than 80% protective during the Omicron outbreak. No new safety concerns were identified during the study, the companies said in a press release, and the majority of reported adverse events were mild or moderate.
Pfizer and its partner BioNTech have been testing their COVID-19 vaccine in children under the age of 5 since last year. Company research determined that two shots would not be enough to prevent disease in this age group during the Omicron outbreak, so the companies added a third shot to the regimen.
Efficacy in this age group is still unconfirmed and awaiting further infections, but only 10 children in the study developed symptomatic cases as of April 29, the companies said. The study protocol specified that a formal efficacy analysis would be conducted once at least 21 children developed symptomatic cases.
The vaccine is the same as for older children and adults, but the dose for younger children is 3 micrograms, one-tenth the adult dose.
USA Today contributed to this report.
Ema Sasic covers health in the Coachella Valley. Reach them at [email protected] or on Twitter @ema_sasic.