California Coronavirus Update: Case Total Crosses Grim 300,000 Mark As New Infections And Deaths Near Records For Second Time This Week

coronavirus testing site
A coronavirus testing site Chelsea Lauren/Shutterstock

California reported 7,798 new cases of coronavirus on Friday. That marked the second highest total of new cases the state has ever seen. Two days ago, California set the record, with 11,694 new cases. That total included a backlog of cases from Los Angeles County. The total of confirmed cases in the state now stands at 304,297.

California Governor Gavin Newsom reported 7,031 new cases of coronavirus in the state on Thursday. The 7-day average of new cases was 8,043, a number that, three days prior, would have been an all-time high.

Yesterday, Newsom said the the state has seen a 7.1% test positivity rate over 14 days. “That 7 percent can spike,” he warned. It may be doing just that as, on Friday, that same 14 day average datapoint rose to 7.4 percent.

The positivity numbers come as researchers in the U.K. released a study finding that the virus that causes COVID-19 appears to bind to human cells about 1,000 times tighter than its closest relative, which could account for its much higher infection rate.

The virus was responsible for 140 new reported deaths in California on Friday. That was very close the all-time daily high of 149 deaths seen just one day before. Prior to that, Friday’s reported 140 new deaths would have been a record by a long shot.

Thusfar, coronavirus is responsible for the deaths of 6,851 Californians.

On Thursday, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced the record number of daily deaths in the state from COVID-19, up about 23 percent from the previous high of 115 deaths over one 24-hour period. The 115 lives lost total was reported on April 22 during the previous peak of the virus in California.

Newsom pointed out on Wednesday that one recent tally of daily deaths was 6, and that delayed reporting can inflate or deflate 24-hour numbers. As a result, Newsom asked Californians to focus on the 7 day mortality rate, which was 73 lives lost each day. He said that number indicates how devastating the virus continues to be.

Not coincidentally, the state’s largest county confirmed 50 new deaths on Thursday. That number of new deaths was much higher than the 7-day average of 24 deaths, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

As a result, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti and the region’s top public health official each floated the idea of returning to a Safer-At-Home order if coronavirus numbers do not turn around.

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