|(December 17, 2020, 8:50 a.m.) -- As displayed on LBREPORT.com's front page COVID-19 dashboard, City of Long Beach Dec. 16 data show the City's seven day (smoothed) positivity rate (percentage of tests coming out positive) has risen
to 12.4% from 12.1%, 11.5%, 10,7%, 10.2%, 9.9%, 9.3%, 7.25%, 6.8%, and 6.4% in preceding 7 day positivity rates (percentage of tests showing positive, smoothed over 7 days.)
The seven day case rate per 100,000 population has risen to 95.4 from 88.7, 81.1, 74.1, 68.3, 50.3, 46.5, 39.8, and 36.7 in preceding reports Total LB deaths 306 up from 302, 295, 290.) (City statement adds: "Due to a data processing delay at the State level, today’s (Dec. 15) new case count includes a portion of backlogged cases from last week.".
City statement says four public-facing LBPD employees have tested positive for COVID-19, including:four employees assigned to South Division (last at work between Dec. 9, 10, 11 and 14.)
The City has acknowledged that three public-facing LBFD employees have tested positive for COVID-19 (last at work between Dec. 10-11) including:employees at Stations 15 and 6 and another at LBFD HQ and a public-facing employee from LB's Parks, Recreation and Marine Maintenance Operations Bureau has tested positive for COVID-19 (last at work Dec. 11.)
As of dawn Dec. 17, LBUSD's COVID-19 dashboard indicates that since Sept. 1, LBUSD has had 149 total confirmed cases at its limited K-5 sites comprised of 105 LBUSD employees, 32 students and 17 vendors/visitors.
LA County Health Officer Barbara Ferrer (jurisdiction doesn't include Long Beach) said on Dec. 16: "We have the most difficult road in front of us and the virus is rampant in our neighborhoods. Every hour, on average, two of our neighbors, family members and friends are dying from COVID-19. The most important way we get through these hard times is for everyone to stay home as much as possible and only go out for work, exercise or for essential services. When you must leave your home, always wear a face covering and stay at least 6 feet away from people you do not live with. Please cancel holiday plans that involve travel or gathering with friends and family that are not part of your household. Unless we remain more diligent through the holidays - and beyond -- we will not be able to stop the surge and provide essential relief to our hospitals and healthcare workers."
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|As previously reported by LBREPORT.com, the sharp rises are visible despite the City of Long Beach blocking public and press access to the City's daily positivity rate, offering instead only a 7-day numerically smoothed figure diluted by older (superceded and thus stale) data from nearly a week earlier.
The higher the positivity rate, the more likely the virus is circulating in higher numbers. By concealing that daily figure, the City is offering the public only a single figure likely lower in real time. To our knowledge, nothing leglly prevents the City of Long Beach (with its own indeopendently run Health Dept.) from publicly listing BOTH figures: the City smoothed 7-day positive rate alongside the daily (real world) COVID-19 positive test results;
The City doesn't deny having the daily positivity rate figure. On December 3 and 4, LBREPORT.com asked Long Beach city management's Joint Information Center to provide us with the most recent daily positivity rate figure. On December 10, the City's Joint Information Center provided us with the following response from the City's Communicable Disease Control Program Supervisor.; Emily Holman, MSc. (who answers to Dr. Davis.)
"The city no longer examines the daily positivity rate, as that number is too unstable and can provide false conclusions. The 7-day average is both timely and more stable and thus, more accurate."
LBREPORT.com publisher Bill Pearl states: "We are unaware of any legal authority allowing Dr. Davis or her subordinate to censor, sanitize, downplay or otherwise block public and press access to timely COVID-related numerical data."
Publisher Pearl urged City Manager Modica to reconsider current policy and direct his Health Officer through her subordinate to release the City's daily positivity rate numerical information. "If City Manager Modica declines to do so, LBREPORT.com urges the City Council to direct the City Manage to do so. This is timely numerical information that Councilmembers' constituents and the public have a right to know."
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