COVID-19 Response Plan
page last updated on 5/25/2023
LA County’s Current CDC Community Level is:
View Los Angeles County
COVID-19 Response Plan (PDF)
Los Angeles County Metrics
(per 100,000 people in last 7 days)
|New COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 population (7-day total)||Proportion of staffed inpatient beds occupied by COVID-19 patients (7-day average)|
Los Angeles County (LAC) will continue to use the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) COVID-19 Community Level Matrix to guide assessment of risk across the county and inform the adoption of prevention strategies (see Community Safety Protection Measures and Prevention Strategies below). LA County will implement strategies for a higher community level when results for both hospital metrics in the framework are at or above the thresholds for the higher community level for at least fourteen (14) consecutive days. Strategies will revert to a lower community level when the result for at least one hospital metric has fallen below the threshold for the higher community level for at least fourteen (14) consecutive days or the hospital metric has been declining consistently for the prior fourteen (14) days.
|Fewer than 200||New COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 population (7-day total)||<10.0||10.0-19.9||≥20.0|
|Proportion of staffed inpatient beds occupied by COVID-19 patients (7-day average)||<10.0%||10.0-14.9%||≥15.0%|
|200 or more||New COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 population (7-day total)||NA||<10.0||≥10.0|
|Proportion of staffed inpatient beds occupied by COVID-19 patients (7-day average)||NA||<10.0%||≥10.0%|
(Aligned with CDC Community Levels)
The Community Safety Protection Measures and Prevention Strategies below reflect CDC, state, and county mitigation efforts in four areas: indoor masking, testing, vaccination, and ventilation. Federal and state requirements are embedded in the table below and will be changed if and when these requirements change.
*Note: When there is circulation of an emerging COVID-19 variant of concern that shows potential evidence of vaccine avoidance, these recommendations and requirements will be modified.
The strategies in the table cover low, medium and high community levels. Please scroll vertically to view all community level strategies.
|CDC Community Level1:
|CDC Community Level1:
|CDC Community Level1:
Note: Employees who are working indoors or in vehicles with more than one person may request respirators for voluntary use.
|All individuals, regardless of vaccination status||Individual preference3, unless required by site||Recommended unless required by site||Strongly recommended or required, depending on an assessment of local conditions at the time|
|Individuals at elevated risk2||Recommended in higher risk settings unless required by site||Strongly recommended unless required by site||Strongly recommended or required, depending on an assessment of local conditions at the time|
|For those exposed||Recommended to mask indoors for 10 days after last day of exposure||Recommended to mask indoors for 10 days after last day of exposure||Recommended to mask indoors for 10 days after last day of exposure|
|For those confirmed positive||
|All healthcare settings and congregate care facilities||Required for healthcare workers providing patient care and in patient care areas, but optional for patients and visitors.||Required for healthcare workers providing patient care and in patient care areas; strongly recommended for patients and visitors.||Required for healthcare workers providing patient care and in patient care areas and required for all patients and visitors.|
|Correctional and detention facilities, homeless and emergency shelters||Individual preference3 outside of clinical areas unless required by agency, if no outbreak has occurred within 14 days.||Strongly recommended unless required by the site.||Strongly recommended or required depending on an assessment of local conditions at the time.|
|Public transit, transportation hub, and transportation service (including shuttle bus, ride share, taxis, and medical transport)||Individual preference, unless required by transportation agency.||Strongly recommended, unless required by transportation agency||Strongly recommended or required depending on an assessment of local conditions at the time.|
|Routine screening testing in workplaces||As required by the site or sector||As required by the site or sector||As required by the site or sector|
|For those exposed||Strongly recommended as soon as possible after exposure to determine infection status and again between Day 3-5 from exposure.||Strongly recommended as soon as possible after exposure to determine infection status and again between Day 3-5 from exposure.||Recommended as soon as possible after exposure to determine infection status and again between Day 3-5 from exposure.|
|For those symptomatic / confirmed positive||Recommended to exit isolation after day 5||Recommended to exit isolation after day 5||Recommended to exit isolation after day 5|
|Before gathering socially with those at elevated risk||Individual preference3, unless required by site/host||Individual preference3, unless required by site/host||Strongly recommended, unless required by site/host|
|Visitors indoors at health care facilities, including congregate care sites||Individual preference3, unless required by site/host||Strongly recommended, unless required by site/host||Require all visitors, regardless of COVID vaccination status to be tested prior to indoor visitation|
|For healthcare workers, employees at healthcare facilities, and employees at high-risk care settings||Vaccination Required (primary series + one booster)||Vaccination Required (primary series + one booster)||Vaccination Required (primary series + one booster)|
|Ventilation throughout indoor spaces||Strongly recommend to ensure and maintain improved ventilation throughout indoor spaces||Strongly recommend to ensure and maintain improved ventilation throughout indoor spaces||Strongly recommend to ensure and maintain improved ventilation throughout indoor spaces|
(2) Individuals at elevated risk include: elderly, unvaccinated, those with underlying medical conditions, immunocompromised individuals, and those living in high poverty communities. This means that a person with one or more of these conditions who gets very sick from COVID-19 (has severe illness from COVID-19) is more likely to: be hospitalized, need intensive care, require a ventilator to help them breathe, or die. See CDC website for more details on the underlying medical conditions associated with elevated risk of severe COVID-19 illness.
(3) Individual preference means that no person can be prevented from wearing a mask as a condition of participation in an activity or entry into a business.
Public Health will monitor the following signals to provide early indication of concerning trends that can result in future high rates of transmission and/or increased illness severity. The signals in the table below include four (4) community-wide measures (variants of concern, Emergency Department COVID-19 visits, cumulative case rate in high poverty communities, and SARS-CoV-2 wastewater concentration) and four (4) sector specific measures (outbreaks at Skilled Nursing Facilities [SNFs], outbreaks at Transitional Kindergarten (TK) through 12th grade schools, outbreaks at settings assisting persons experiencing homelessness [PEH], clusters at worksites). An alert in any measure that reaches the threshold for medium or high concern will trigger an in-depth review of contributing factors and the possibility of modifications to community prevention strategies.
|Indicator Thresholds||Low Concern||Medium Concern||High Concern||LA County's Current Values|
|Percent of specimens sequenced that are identified as a new subvariant of interest* (based on WHO, CDC, or local designation)1
Currently tracking: XBB.1.16
|< 10%||10%-20%||> 20%||4%|
|7-day average of the percent of Emergency Department (ED) encounters classified as coronavirus-related2||< 5%||5%-10%||> 10%||3%|
|7-day cumulative age-adjusted case rate for the lowest income areas (30-100% area poverty)3||< 100 per 100,000||100-200 per 100,000||> 200 per 100,000||11 per 100,000|
|Current SARS-CoV-2 wastewater concentration as a percentage of the Winter 2022-2023 peak concentration value4||< 30%||30-60%||> 60%||9%|
|Number of new outbreaks in skilled nursing facilities over the past 7 days5||≤10||11-20||>20||9|
|Number of new outbreaks in TK-12 school classrooms over the past 7 days5||≤ 10||11-20||>20||1|
|Number of new outbreaks in PEH settings over the past 7 days5||≤ 10||11-20||>20||2|
|Number of worksite cluster reports in the past 7 days6||< 150||150-350||> 350||7|
(1) Current 14-day period is 4/16/23 – 4/29/23.
Variant proportions are based on a sample of all rt-PCR positive specimens collected from Los Angeles County residents. On average, sequencing data is available 2-3 weeks after specimen collection. Variant proportions are calculated in two-week intervals using date of specimen collection. Estimates may be revised as additional data is reported.
(2) Current 7-day period is 5/15/24/23 –5/21/23.
Coronavirus classification is determined by a free text search for mention of coronavirus, COVID-19, and synonyms within extracts of patient chief complaint and diagnoses from Syndromic Surveillance participating hospitals. Some encounters may be missed due to incomplete and/or delayed reason-for-visit information or misclassified due to COVID-19 screening during a visit regardless of the actual primary reason for visit. This percentage from Syndromic Surveillance participating hospitals is not intended to reflect the exact percentage for the population, but is a useful tool for monitoring trends over time.
(3) Current 7-day period is 5/14/23 – 5/20/23.
Cases are counted by episode date which is the earliest existing value of: date of onset, date of diagnosis, date of death, date received, or specimen collection date. Area Poverty reflects the percentage of households living at or below the federal poverty line. The “lowest income areas” used in this metric are census tracts with 30-100% of households living at or below the federal poverty line. Area poverty estimates are derived from the US Census 5-year (2013-2017) American Community Survey at the census tract level. The case rate is age-adjusted and is per 100,000. Population estimates are derived from LAC PEPS 2018 demography files.
(4) Current period for weekly average is 5/7/23 – 5/13/23.
A weighted average is calculated by using the SARS-CoV-2 viral concentrations across 3 sewer systems that track the virus in LA County (Hyperion Water Reclamation Plant, Joint Water Pollution Control Plant, Lancaster Water Reclamation Plant), with the weights representing the population size served by each sewer system. Weekly weighted averages are then compared against the maximum weekly weighted average SARS-CoV-2 viral concentration observed during the Winter 2022-2023 surge.
(5) Current 7-day period is 5/17/23 – 5/23/23.
Counts include outbreak investigations initiated in the past 7 days at skilled nursing facilities, TK-12 school classrooms, and homeless settings. Counts exclude investigations initiated more than 28 days after the first case's test or onset date (to account for delayed reporting to DPH). As of 6/16/22, the threshold for opening an outbreak in a Persons Experiencing Homelessness (PEH) setting changed from at least 1 case or 2 persons under investigation to at least 2 cases or 3 persons under investigation. As of 7/8/22, the threshold for opening an outbreak in a PEH setting changed from at least 2 cases or 3 persons under investigation to 3 cases or 3 persons under investigation.
(6) Current 7-day period is 5/17/23 – 5/23/23.
Worksite clusters are 3 or more cases within 14 days as reported by an employer. Worksite clusters can represent outbreaks or non-outbreaks and, if there are additional cases, can be multiple reports of the same site. As of 5/10/22, the reporting cutoff for the last day of 7-day reporting period was adjusted from 11:59PM to noon. On 5/23/22, changes in cluster report data processing were implemented, including exclusion of duplicate reports with fewer than 3 cases.
For each of the sectors, the table below provides additional general mitigation measures and other measures that should be implemented based on an assessment of the situation including metrics in the CDC COVID-19 Community Levels and LA County Early Alert Signals tables above. Please see individual sector guidance for more information.
NOTE: All sectors should follow the minimum requirements related to indoor masking, testing, vaccination, and ventilation measures set forth in the Community Safety Protection Measures and Prevention Strategies section above.
|General Mitigation Measures||Enhanced Mitigation Measures|
SECTOR: Skilled Nursing Facilities
*The measures in this table are general information for the public. Healthcare facilities must follow specific LAC DPH guidance and CDPH and CMS requirements.
For more details, see SNF guidance:
|SECTOR: Transitional Kindergarten (TK)-12 Grade|
For more details, see guidance below:
Guidelines for COVID-19 Prevention in TK-12 Schools:
Exposure Management Plan Guidance for TK-12 Schools:
|SECTOR: Shelters and Interim Housing Serving Persons Experiencing Homelessness (PEH)|
For more details, see guidance below:
Homeless service providers:
Responding to COVID-19 in the workplace:
Best Practices to Prevent COVID-19, Guidance for Businesses and Employers
|SECTOR: Highly Impacted Communities|
Aligned with CDC Community Levels
Much of the COVID-19 Response Plan depends on our ability to focus resources on response actions and preparedness activities. Response actions include addressing increasing levels of community risk and early alert signals that may be sector specific. Preparedness activities are focused on strategies that consistently allow the county to respond to changing conditions.
Note: Starting May 25, 2023, the dashboard will be updated once per month on the third Thursday of the month.
|Preparedness Actions||Needs Improvement||Adequate||Outstanding||LA County Current Values|
|Access to vaccines: Number of mobile vaccination sites per week||Less than 200||200-300||More than 300||
|Access to vaccines: Number of fixed vaccination sites||Less than 900||900-1,100||More than 1,100||991
|Access to vaccines: Percentage of eligible homebound residents referred to DPH and vaccinated who received their vaccine within 2 weeks from date of referral||Less than 60%||60%-75%||More than 75%||100%
|Vaccine uptake: Percentage of residents 65+ who have received an updated booster dose1||Less than 60%||60%-90%||More than 90%||40%
(as of 5/21/23)
|Testing access for LA County residents: Number of antigen tests distributed by DPH in the past week2||Less than 100,000||100,000-150,000||More than 150,000||323,242
|Testing access at Schools: Percentage of TK-12 public schools that have capacity for response testing3||Less than 80%||80%-90%||More than 90%||93%
(as of 5/22/23)
|Testing access at SNFs: Percentage of Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs) that have capacity for routine response testing||Less than 90%||90%-99%||100%||100%
|Access to therapeutics: Number of sites in the most vulnerable communities3 that dispense therapeutics4||Less than 150 sites||150-250 sites||More than 250 sites||575
(as of 5/19/23)
|Access to therapeutics: Percentage of eligible residents using the call center who received recommended therapeutics||Less than 80%||80%-90%||More than 90%||100%
|Surveillance – Sequencing: Number of positive case specimens that are sequenced in the most recent two-week period||Less than 300||300-1,200||More than 1,200||214
|Surveillance –Wastewater: Number of Service Planning Areas (SPAs) represented in wastewater collection and testing 3X/week||Less than 5||5-7||8||7
(as of 5/13/23)
|Surveillance – EDs: Percentage of EDs reporting COVID-like illness data||Less than 80%||80%-90%||More than 90%||81%
(as of 5/21/23)
1 An updated booster dose is a bivalent booster dose administered on or after 9/1/2022.
2 The “Testing access for LA County residents” metric includes antigen tests distributed by DPH to all sites, including schools and SNFs
3 The “most vulnerable” communities are classified based upon at least 11 community characteristics, including economic, housing, environment, social, education, transportation and health care compiled in the California Department of Public Health Vaccine Equity Metric or by having a fully vaccinated population coverage less than the overall Los Angeles County estimate.
4 Therapeutics include oral and injectable medications used to prevent infection or disease progression among those with infection.
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Public Health has made reasonable efforts to provide accurate translation. However, no computerized translation is perfect and is not intended to replace traditional translation methods. If questions arise concerning the accuracy of the information, please refer to the English edition of the website, which is the official version.