California Sets Records For Cases, Deaths As Virus Surges

LOS ANGELES (AP) – California health authorities have reported a one-day record of 379 coronavirus deaths and more than 52,000 new confirmed cases. Two people are dying of COVID-19 every hour in California’s most populous county as hospitals struggle to keep up with the surge of coronavirus patients. The staggering new figures released Thursday mean California has seen more than 1,000 deaths in the last five days and nearly 106,000 cases in just two days. Many of the state’s hospitals are now running out of capacity to treat the severest cases. California’s pandemic death toll now stands at 21,860. The state has also seen the most cases in the nation with more than 1.7 million confirmed.┬áMost of California’s 40 million residents are under stay-at-home orders because of dwindling intensive care unit capacity. The massive rise in infections began in October and is being blamed largely on people ignoring safety measures and socializing with others. A pair of state advisory committees has started making potential life-and-death decisions over who is next in line for scarce vaccines.