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Santa Monica COVID Cases Rise
By Jorge Casuso
April 12, 2022 -- Coronavirus cases in Santa Monica saw a significant increase over the past two weeks, reflecting a countywide trend, according to Los Angeles County Health data.
The increase was caused by the spread of the BA.2 subvariant of Omicron, which, while not considered severe, is substantially more transmissible than BA.1 and better able to evade vaccines, early studies have shown.
There were 266 cases reported in Santa Monica over the two weeks ending Sunday, up from 178 cases confirmed over the prior two weeks, a 50 percent increase, according to data analyzed by the Lookout.
Meanwhile, seven Santa Monica residents died with the coronavirus over the same period, continuing a trend that has seen an average of 3.5 weekly virus-related deaths over the past two and a half months.
Deaths typically take two weeks to report.
As of 6 p.m. Sunday, there was a total of 17,098 COVID-19 cases reported in the City of 93,000 since a health emergency was declared in March 2020.
A total of 240 residents have died with the virus, with the current weekly death rate reaching the highest level in a year.
As of last Thursday, 92.2 percent of Santa Monica residents over 5 years of age were vaccinated.
The increase in cases comes as the BA.2 variant has become the dominant strain of the virus in the County, accounting for 47 percent of sequenced specimens on March 19, up from 5 percent a month earlier, health data shows.
Coronavirus cases in LA County, which has a population of more than 10 million, saw a 23 percent increase over the past week -- from 783 cases to 960.
Despite the increase, COVID-19 hospitalization numbers "remain stable with 270 patients currently hospitalized and deaths remain low," County Health officials said.
"The increase in LA County mirrors what we are seeing nationally and internationally," officials said.
While there are few outbreaks in many sectors, Public Health officials caution that gatherings for Ramadan, Passover, Easter and Spring Break "could eventually lead to more cases and outbreaks."
To date, a total of 2,847,097 positive cases of COVID-19 and 31,819 virus-related deaths have been reported countywide, officials said.
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