SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) — For the first time since he began his daily coronavirus briefings, Gov. Gavin Newsom was able to announce a drop in the number of the Californians who have been stricken by the virus being treated in ICU units across the state.

Currently, there were 1,132 coronavirus patients in ICU care, a drop of 1.9 percent from Wednesday. But while being encouraged, Newsom said he was also being cautious.

“Here is a percentage drop that I have not been communicating in any of my daily briefing,” Newsom said. “That number of 1,132 represents a drop of 1.9 percent from yesterday. One data point is not a trend, one datapoint does not make a headline. So I caution anyone from reading too much into that one point. None the less it is encouraging.”

“It just again re-enforces the incredible work all of you are doing to practice physical distancing. The stay at home is working…That curve has been bent in this state.”

As for new cases and deaths, the governor said the confirmed cases within the state have grown to 18,390 and 492 lives have been claimed by the virus. Fifty victims have died in the last 24 hours.

“Four-hundred ninety-two families torn apart, these are not statistics — behind every stat is a real person, real lives who have been torn apart.”

There were currently, 2,825 coronavirus patients being treat in hospitals across the state. That represented a 4.1 percent increase over Wednesday.

Newsom also broke down the numbers of confirmed cases by ethnic groups. Of the positive tests reported so far, 30 percent have been among Latino community with 25 percent of the deaths. Seven percent of the positives impacted the African American community with 8 percent of the deaths. Within the Asian community, 13 percent of the positive test results and 18 percent of the deaths have occurred within the ethnic group.

Newsom said the supply of ventilators available for use in the state’s 416 hospitals has grown from 7,587 weeks ago to 11,747 on Thursday.

The governor also defended sending ventilators to other states to help them treat a surge in patients.

“Because the hospitals, like the state of California, have worked every day to procure 11,747,” he said. “I make that point to make this point, I think some people have expressed some concern about California’s willingness to extent a hand to New Jersey, New York, Illinois and D.C. to Maryland to Nevada to other states across the country by lending ventilators to deal with the crisis. We thought it was the right thing to and the responsible thing to do as Americans.”

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