LOUISIANA COVID-19 CASES ON THE RISE - Governor John Bel Edwards held a press conference in Baton Rouge yesterday explaining an assessment of the Novel Coronavirus in Louisiana. Edwards along with state health officials had just met with Vice Admiral Jerome Adams, U.S. Surgeon General who paid a visit to Louisiana yesterday. Edwards had declared a public health emergency Wednesday, during his press conference he announced more persons in Louisiana have tested positive for the COVID-19 disease only three days after the first case in Louisiana was reported.
"We have 14 presumptive-positive cases in Louisiana," Edwards said. "That is one more than we shared with you yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon."
Since the press conference that number has increased to 19, Those who have been tested “presumptive positive," are from Orleans, Jefferson, LaFourche, and Caddo Parishes. Those tests await confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vice Admiral Adams gave an brief overview of the Corona virus.
"The Novel Coronavirus started in China and it causes a mild flu-like illness in most people," Adams explained. "80% of the people who actually get the Coronavirus and probably more than that because so many folks are aymptomatic, but 80% of people do not need medical attention."
Although more Coronavirus test kits are being made available, Adams explained that not everyone should get tested.
"Not everyone should be getting a test right now," Adams said. "If you talk to your healthcare provider, that's a conversation that you need to have about whether or not your risk is high, whether or not it's going to change your outcome, and whether or not it is appropriate for us to utilize limited resources to test you versus to test someone else who may be at much higher risk."
The focus right now is to prevent a spike in Coronavirus cases which has led to cancellation of public events, temporarily suspending classes at schools and universities. Governor Edwards said these measures should flatten the so-called infection curve so as to not overwhelm health resources .
"What we have to do to protect public health more than anything else is lower the peak," explained Edwards. "So that we don't have more cases than is necessary and then extend the duration so we don't put too much demand on our healthcare providers in certain areas all at one time."
According to health experts for most people, the virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. Most people recover within weeks, as has happened with three-quarters of those infected in mainland China.
Getting accurate up-to-date information information is key to understanding safe practices for prevention to getting infected. In Louisiana – a statewide network has been launched to answer questions – on your phone dial 211, or text the keyword LA COVID the number for that is 898-211 for the most current information about the Novel Coronavirus. There’s an online resource www.211LA.org. There’s also a government website Coronavirus.gov.