LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Studio City and Santa Clarita are among the communities in Los Angeles County with the highest new COVID-19 infection rates, despite high vaccination rates.
Dr. Barbara Ferrer, director of the LA County Department of Public Health, reported Thursday that these communities were among the county’s 10 highest areas for new coronavirus infections for the two-week period that ended. November 6.
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Lancaster and Palmdale top the list.
Of the 10 communities that had the highest rate of new cases, seven had vaccination rates that exceed the countywide rate, according to DPH.
Ferrer said officials are studying the data to determine what is driving higher case rates in these communities, but she insisted the numbers don’t mean the vaccines aren’t effective. She said current figures show unvaccinated people are nine times more likely than vaccinated people to be infected and 67 times more likely to be hospitalized.
Lancaster and Palmdale have lower than average rates of fully immunized residents, at 58% and 66%, respectively.
Studio City, with the third highest rate of new cases, has a vaccination rate of 79%, and Santa Clarita, which ranks fourth on the list, has a vaccination rate of 75%.
The number of fully immunized residents countywide is 73%.
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Of the other communities on the top 10 list of highest new case rates, only Willowbrook, at 62%, falls below the countywide vaccination rate.
She said a variety of factors could be at play in different communities, including the possibility that certain areas have large numbers of people who have never been infected with COVID-19 and who are not vaccinated, which leading to an increase in the number of current infections.
“It’s certainly possible, although we need to look at more data to come to that conclusion,” Ferrer said.
The county reported 26 more COVID-19-related deaths Thursday, bringing the total number of virus-related deaths to 26,949. Another 1,088 cases have been reported, giving the county a cumulative pandemic total of 1,515,324.
The rolling average daily rate of people testing positive for the virus in the county was 1.1% on Thursday.
Ferrer said 82% of county residents ages 12 and older have received at least one dose of the COVID vaccine and 73% are fully vaccinated.
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