LOS ANGELES (AP) - California broke a record Sunday with more than 7,400 coronavirus hospitalizations as counties statewide prepared for stricter COVID-19 restrictions to take effect amid surging cases and Thanksgiving travel.
Health officials are preparing for a wave of cases in the next two or three weeks that could be tied to holiday gatherings.
Counties statewide issued new restrictions, many set to take effect Monday, in an effort to avoid overwhelming hospitals.
Yet the state reported 7,415 coronavirus hospitalizations on Sunday, citing the most recently available data from the previous day. The new figure breaks the state's previous record of 7,170 in July.
As of Sunday, California has had nearly 1.2 million confirmed coronavirus cases since the pandemic began. The state reported around 15,600 new cases on Saturday. There have been 19,121 virus-related deaths in California during the pandemic.
The number of new COVID-19 cases reported in the United States topped 200,000 for the first time Friday. The highest previous daily count was 196,000 on Nov. 20, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Since January, when the first infections were reported in the U.S., the nation’s total number of cases has surpassed 13 million. More than 265,000 people have died.
LA County, the nation’s most populous, will impose a lockdown calling for its 10 million residents to stay home “as much as possible,” prohibiting them from gathering with people outside of their household for public or private occasions beginning Monday, except for faith-based services and protests.
In Northern California, Santa Clara County — home to Silicon Valley — is banning all high school, collegiate and professional sports and imposing a quarantine for those traveling into the region from more than 150 miles away.
San Francisco and San Mateo counties moved to the most restrictive purple tier in the state’s pandemic blueprint for the economy, forcing most indoor activities to close by noon Sunday and placing the counties’ residents under curfew starting Monday night.