The number of COVID-positive patients in Los Angeles County hospitals fell again Monday, continuing a weeklong series of daily declines, but another 40 virus-related deaths were reported.

The 40 new deaths increased the county’s overall death toll from the virus to 28,963. Another 10,715 COVID cases were reported Monday, giving the county a cumulative pandemic total of 2,659,414.

According to state figures, there were 3,720 COVID-positive patients in county hospitals as of Monday, down from 3,852 on Sunday. A week ago, there were nearly 4,600 COVID-positive patients, but the number has been steadily declining.

Of the current patients, 749 were being treated in intensive care, a drop from 759 a day earlier.

County officials have said that some of these patients — at one point around 50% — entered a hospital for other reasons and only discovered they had the coronavirus after a mandated test.

The number of new COVID cases and deaths confirmed Monday are likely an undercount, representing delays in reporting from the weekend.

The average daily rate of people testing positive for the virus also continue to fall, reaching 8.8% as of Monday, down from 9.1% a day earlier and below the 13.2% rate a week earlier.

The county Department of Public Health reported generally good compliance with masking and vaccination requirements among businesses such as restaurants, bars, nightclubs and breweries. According to the county, compliance was above 90% for such establishments during the week of Jan. 21-27. The rate was around 80% for mask-wearing compliance in gyms that week, and around 74% at garment manufacturers.

“We are encouraged with the high rates of compliance at local businesses where for months customers and employees have taken responsibility for wearing masks,” County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement. “With thousands of new people infected each day and a variant circulating that evades some of our vaccine protection, masking, when in close contact with others, remains an important layer of protection, especially for essential workers.”

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