The number of people hospitalized with coronavirus in Riverside County dropped while an additional 12 virus-related deaths were reported in the most recent data.

Numbers released Monday by the Riverside University Health System showed COVID-related hospitalizations countywide were at 381, down 41 from Friday. That number includes 111 intensive care patients, down six from Friday.

A total of 4,963 deaths from virus-related complications have been recorded in the past 18 months. The fatalities are trailing indicators because of delays processing death certificates and can go back weeks, according to health officials.

On Monday, 669 COVID infections were confirmed, lifting the county’s overall number since the pandemic began to 351,710.

The number of known active virus cases in the county Monday was 4,611, down 937 from Friday. The active count is derived by subtracting deaths and recoveries from the current total — 351,710 — according to the county Executive Office.

Verified patient recoveries countywide were 342,136.

RUHS does not release updated COVID-19 statistics on weekends.

The RUHS began administering Pfizer vaccine booster shots Saturday. The move follows the approval of such boosters by federal officials last week.

To receive a Pfizer vaccine booster, residents must have received their second vaccine dose of Pfizer at least six months ago. Residents must then be either 65 years or older or be 18-64 years old and either have underlying health conditions that put them at risk of COVID-19 or be at increased risk of exposure to COVID-19 due to occupational or institutional reasons, such as being a healthcare worker.

“The booster vaccine is something that has been discussed for many weeks and we are very excited that Public Health, along with our community partners, are now in a position to move forward,” said Dr. Geoffrey Leung, public health officer for Riverside County. “Those who are eligible should be confident that a vaccine booster will be available for anyone who wants one.”

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