Louisiana COVID-19 hospitalizations reach new 8-month high

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The Louisiana Department of Health reported 3,705 new COVID-19 cases statewide and 51 more deaths Tuesday, bringing the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases reported in the state to 290,960 and deaths to 7,158 as hospitalizations statewide hit a new eight-month high.

BATON ROUGE, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Louisiana Department of Health reported 3,705 new COVID-19 cases statewide and 51 more deaths Tuesday, bringing the cumulative number of confirmed and probable cases reported in the state to 290,960 and deaths to 7,158 as hospitalizations statewide hit a new eight-month high.

As of Monday, the latest data available, there were 1,647 people in the hospital statewide due to COVID-19, with 181 on ventilators. Hospitalizations previously peaked statewide on July 24 at 1,600.

The latest grim milestone comes one day after the state reported the highest number of deaths in a single day since July.

Gov. John Bel Edwards Phase 2 emergency orders are set to expire Wednesday. He is set to hold a briefing Tuesday afternoon in which he is expected to announce how the state will move forward with coronavirus restrictions. He noted in last week’s briefing that one thing for sure is that restrictions will not be lessened.

Tuesday’s briefing is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. watch streaming live here or on the ArkLaTexhomepage app.

Edwards also said last week that hospital CEOs around the state are “very concerned” about hospital capacity as much about available staff as available beds.

Hospitalizations in Northwest Louisiana also reached an all-time high Monday at 333. That number had previously peaked at 217 on Dec. 10, passing the 299-mark reached in the region back on July 23.

Of the new cases reported since Monday, the LDH says 2,720 are confirmed and 985 are probable.

The LDH also began publishing data on coronavirus vaccinations in the state on its COVID-19 dashboard Tuesday, which shows Louisiana has administered 22,018 initial doses since Dec. 14. The vaccination data will be updated twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Also according to the LDH:

  • Because of the daily removal of newly identified duplicates and out of state cases, the new case increase may not match the difference between today’s and yesterday’s total case count.
  • The collection dates for most of these cases (93.1%) fall between December 14 and December 21, 2020.
  • 94% of the cases reported to the state today were community spread.
  • 6% of the cases reported to the state today were in congregate settings.
  • Since yesterday, 46,522 new tests have been reported to the state, bringing the total number of tests to 4,182,279. Of the tests reported today, 40,516 were PCR tests and 6,006 were antigen tests.

Of the 388 new confirmed and probable cases reported in Northwest Louisiana since Monday, 162 were in Caddo Parish and 86 were in Bossier Parish. Caddo also reported three new deaths and Bossier added two. Bienville also added 12 new cases and two new deaths. Webster added 39 more cases, Sabine 25, De Soto and Natchitoches 23 each, Claiborne 15, and Red River three.

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