California is showing improvement in its fight against the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday, citing a significantly lower number of confirmed new cases as the state begins to clear backlogged cases from a data failure.
The Democratic governor said he also was also encouraged by a downward trend in the state's hospitalization rates which he said are down 21%, and ICU admissions, down 15 % over the last 14 days. The number of newly confirmed cases Wednesday, 5,433, was "another indication that we're turning the corner on this pandemic," he said.
The latest figures represent a significant drop from the record 12,807 new cases reported statewide during the spike in infections last month.
More than 10,600 people statewide have died, including 180 reported Wednesday, with the great majority in Los Angeles County.
Dr. Roger Lewis, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, said there's been "a clear decline" in hospitalizations, meaning the rates of transmission began to slow two to three weeks ago. Daily said cases are back to where they were in May.
"The consistent downtrend in new cases requiring hospitalization and the slight decrease in transmission rate is good news," he said. "This is what progress looks like when we work together."
State officials are still working to process the nearly 300,000 coronavirus test results lost because of a data error. The state relies on timely statistics to determine whether schools and businesses can reopen. Newsom said it will take a few more days before officials can assess the overall infection rate.