California health officials are reporting seven million COVID cases since the start of the pandemic.
The LA Times says the state reached the grim milestone on Monday, adding more than a million cases in about a week. There are over 14,000 COVID patients in California hospitals, more than double the amount on New Year's Day. The state did report a decline in the COVID positivity rate from 23.1% to 21.5%. The state has also tallied nearly 850,000 cases of COVID among kids, ranging from newborns- to-17-year olds, since the beginning of the pandemic. Of those, 44 have died. Due to the presence of rapidly changing variants, the spread of COVID has been much quicker compared to last winter where surges were peaking. This is because the strains Omicron is believed to be two to four more times likely to be caught, while Delta has been an infectious scare that surfaced last winter.
The daily death rate for the state has risen drastically, with the most recent data from a seven day period showing 106 deaths a day, doubling the last week of 2021. Health officials contribute a large factor of peak infection rates to hospital overcrowding and staff shortages, with emergency rooms being filled constantly across the state.