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California's statewide ICU capacity falls below 10% as virus cases surge

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Posted at 1:44 PM, Dec 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-11 18:09:31-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — California public health officials said Friday that the state's ICU capacity dropped dangerously low, prompting warnings to take the latest regional stay-at-home order seriously.

The Office of the Governor announced on social media that, "there is less than 10% ICU capacity remaining statewide. We are at a critical moment. Calling all Californians - stay home & wear a mask to save lives. All hands on deck with our health & emergency teams as we address the capacity crisis."

The state also broke a single-day record for new COVID-19 cases with 35,468 cases on Friday, and reached a new high in hospitalizations, with 12,013 patients, and ICU cases, at 2,669, Los Angeles ABC affiliate KABC said.

RELATED: San Diego hospitals lay out plans to distribute vaccines to staff

Friday, the state's COVID-19 data showed California's ICU capacity at 9% and a seven-day average 8.4% positivity rate. The Southern California region, which includes San Diego County, currently sits at 6.2% ICU capacity.

The figures, however, don't necessarily give a real-time picture of staffed beds available since the state adjusts the percentage based on the ratio of COVID-19 positive and non-coronavirus patients.

California's regional stay-at-home orders covered 36 counties, or about 77% of the state, as of Friday.

Friday, FDA officials are expected to approve Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine for distribution. According to the CDC, front line medical workers are among the first set to receive the vaccination.