This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

California health officials are bracing for the potential for a new round of infections from Christmas gatherings, though it could take several weeks to determine how bad such a wave would be.

A surge of COVID-19 fueled by Thanksgiving gatherings have pushed hospitals across Southern California to the breaking point, with intensive care units having few or no available beds, facilities running low on oxygen and other supplies and patients waiting hours for care. Infections are spreading unchecked, and deaths are also hitting new highs.

It’s difficult to know whether people followed the plea from health experts and avoided big Christmas gatherings. Los Angeles International Airport, however, saw surges in passengers, which some took as a bad sign.

“It’s getting worse, and we haven’t even hit the Christmas or New Year’s surge yet, so I feel like the number of people that are going to die because the hospital system is beyond overwhelmed will shoot up,” one doctor at an L.A. County hospital said.

Read the full story at