GOV EDWARDS COVID-19 UPDATE- Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards and New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell held a joint press conference from the Morial Convention Center yesterday afternoon. Edwards said more than 1,000 hospital beds will be ready within a week for patients recovering from the Covid-19 illness who won’t require intensive care resources. With the rise in COVID-19 infections, Edwards stressed that the projection models indicate Louisiana will need more ventilators to meet the expected demand in the weeks ahead.
"We have ordered well over 12,000 (ventilators) , 5,000 from the national stockpile, at least 7,000 from private vendors,"Edwards said. "Thus fare we've received exactly 192 and this over the last several weeks now."
Edwards said Louisiana hospitals may we be out of ventilator capacity by April 4 or 5 and beds by April 10. He explained that hospitals are adding more than 160 intensive care unit beds in New Orleans, more than 120 ICU beds in Shreveport and more than 100 ICU beds in Baton Rouge.
"We are running models based on growth rate of our cases, the percentage of people who are positive that we know are going to have to go to the hospital," explained Edwards. "A percentage of those individuals who are going to need a ventilator, then you have to figure out what the average stay is going to be in the hospital."
When asked about some groups ignoring his emergency orders on social distancing and gathering in groups larger than 10, Edwards said "You're violating lawful orders, you're going to consume time and attention of First Responders and you're making it much more likely that this disease is going to continue to spread."
Edwards stressed that people need to be better neighbors by practicing social-distancing to prevent community spread of the Coronavirus. Louisiana Department of Health’s website shows the current number of Coronavirus cases reported in the state is 3,540 up from 2300 last Friday . There have been 151 COVID-19 related deaths reported, up from 83. 59 out of the 64 parishes in Louisiana have reported Coronavirus cases. There are 1127 Covid- 19 patients in hospitals, of those 380 are on ventilators.