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Laguna Beach

 Volume 12, Issue 77  |  September 25, 2020

COVID-19: Data glitch contributes to underreporting of case counts; one new case reported in Laguna Beach today, six new deaths countywide

The OC Health Care Agency reports that there have been 143 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Laguna Beach to date, an increase of one case today, a per capita rate of 6.122 cases per thousand residents. The county reports that there have been 39,641 cumulative cases countywide to date, an increase of 565 cases today.

Sadly, the county reports that 726 people have died due to COVID-19 in OC, including six new deaths received today. There have been “less than five deaths” of Laguna Beach residents to date.

However, a glitch in the California Department of Public Health’s data system has contributed to a significant number of “missing” case results, which have not yet been reported in state or county data. 

“Due to issues with the state’s electronic laboratory reporting system, these data represent an underreporting of actual positive cases in one single day,” the state’s website reads.

According to Dr. Clayton Chau, Acting Orange County Health Officer, the data glitch may involve some 300,000 tests statewide, whose results – positive or negative – have not been reported yet. He said he did not know the number of OC cases “missing” specifically.

The data glitch will likely be fixed by the end of next week, Dr. Chau said in a press conference on Friday.

Until then, Dr. Chau said, the state has “paused” its watch list – meaning counties will not be added or removed from the list until after the glitch has been fixed and the backlogged case data released.

In regards to OC elementary schools that may be applying for a waiver to reopen in-person learning, Dr. Chau said those applications are also on hold. The county is accepting applications, but informing applicants that their applications cannot be processed until the data glitch is resolved.

“The conversation can’t start until we know what our community case rate is,” Dr. Chau said.

While daily positive cases and the testing positivity rate have been affected by the glitch, hospitalization and ICU data has not, according to Dr. Chau. The county reports that 43 percent of ICU beds and 66 percent of ventilators are currently available countywide. 

Dr. Chau explained that the county also looks closely at hospital staffing levels, as having enough beds or ventilators does not necessarily mean the county will have adequate staffing.

The county reports that 487 individuals are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 (includes ICU); 163 are in ICU.

The county estimates 29,931 “recovered cases” according to its data criteria.

For questions about the data presented by the county, call (714) 834-2000 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

To view the data dashboard, click here.

Numbers are updated daily by Stu News Laguna and reported on our social media pages @StuNewsLaguna.

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COVID 19 County 8 9 20 2

Click on photos for larger images

Courtesy of OC Health Care Agency

Orange County COVID-19 case data as of August 9, as reported by the County; click here to visit page that is updated daily


Shaena Stabler is the Owner, Publisher & Editor.

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Alexis Amaradio, Barbara Diamond, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Marrie Stone, Maggi Henrikson, Samantha Washer, Stacia Stabler and Suzie Harrison are our writers and/or columnists.

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