4,327 new COVID cases, 16 deaths and 42 more hospitalizations reported over weekend

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RIVERSIDE (CNS) – The number of coronavirus cases climbed by more than 4,000 over the weekend in Riverside County, while 16 more people died from the virus and hospitalizations continued at record levels, health officials reported Monday, Dec. 7.
Locally, two people from Murrieta died and one from Canyon Lake and East Hemet.
As the county joined the rest of Southern California in the first day of a new region-by-region public health lockdown ordered by the governor, the county’s aggregate number of COVID-19 infections reached 92,272, compared to 87,945 on Friday, according to the Riverside University Health System.
No results were reported over the weekend, contributing to the large number of new infections reported Monday.
The new deaths reported Monday lifted the countywide cumulative death toll from the virus to 1,488. There were 700 people hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Monday, compared to 658 on Friday, including 146 intensive care unit patients, an increase of 11 since the end of last week.
Passing the 550 mark in suspected or confirmed coronavirus hospitalizations last week exceeded the county’s previous “surge” recorded in the latter half of July.
The number of known active virus cases countywide was 21,845 on Monday, an increase of 3,608 compared to Friday. The active count is derived by subtracting deaths and recoveries from the current total — 92,272 — according to the County Executive Office.
The number of verified patient recoveries is 68,939. That figure has previously been under-reported due to health officials not being able to confirm the status of patients in follow-up interviews.
The state-adjusted case rate for the county is 21.2 per 100,000 residents, down from 27.2 per 100,000 a week ago, and an overall state-calculated positivity rate of 7.7%, down from 9.9% previously.
Gov. Gavin Newsom’s mandatory “regional stay-at-home” order went into effect at 11:59 p.m. Sunday, triggered when intensive-care unit bed availability fell below 15%. The 11-county Southern California region’s available ICU capacity was 12.5% over the weekend but dipped to 10.9% as of Sunday night.
The order is slated to remain in effect until Dec. 28, when regions may be moved out of lockdown if bed capacity has recovered.
The mandate impacts bars, theaters, museums, hair salons, indoor recreational facilities, amusement parks, and wineries — all of which are supposed to remain closed. Restaurants are confined to takeout and delivery, with capacity limitations on retail outlets.