Los Angeles County continued to report an increase in coronavirus cases on Sunday, counting 3,322 new cases of the virus and 18 related deaths.
The district has now recorded a total of more than 133,700 cases and 3,800 deaths.
The sustained increase is due to the fact that the number of coronavirus deaths in California has risen to over 7,000 this weekend and the infection rate has worsened further.
Hospitalizations in the state and LA County continue to grow. As of Sunday, there were 2,093 confirmed coronavirus patients in district hospitals, 26% in intensive care units and 19% on ventilators. About a month ago, hospital stays ranged between 1,350 and 1,450 daily.
The latest three-day average of the daily number of hospitalized patients was up about 24%, according to the Department of Health's dashboard, which tracks metrics for reopening.
The percentage of positive test results has also increased, which experts say indicates an increase in community broadcasting. As of Sunday, 1,336,000 people were tested, 9% were positive. The 7-day average of the county's daily test positivity rate has risen to 10%, officials said on Friday.
The increases have alarmed public health officials and raised concerns that the hospital system may be overwhelmed.
"We have been fighting this virus for several months and I know that COVID fatigue is a very real thing," said the county health director, Barbara Ferrer, in a statement. "I want to encourage everyone to remain vigilant and continue to use all the tools we need to prevent the virus from spreading again."
This includes physical distancing, frequent wearing of facewear, and hand washing, she said.
Officials believe that the increase in transmission started around Memorial Day week, and have attributed it to the fact that more people were in contact with each other as more jobs were reopened and more social gatherings took place.
In order to limit the increase, the district has partially withdrawn its economic reopening by order of the state. The bars were closed on June 28th and the restaurants were directed to stop offering personal food on July 1st.
In the meantime, the Mayor of LA, Eric Garcetti, has warned that the city could reintroduce a mandatory home stay order if conditions worsen.