From inside the state capitol, Gov. John Bel Edwards held a press briefing today, detailing the most recent COVID-19 numbers, discussing phased reopening procedures and reminding Louisianans that until May 15, Louisiana is still under a stay-at-home order.
The total case count for the state increased by 333 to 29,673; and deaths increased by 22 to 1,991. Gov. Edwards also noted that hospitalizations for COVID-19 patients dipped slightly, the number of patients on ventilators saw a slight increase.
“Overall, the numbers are encouraging,” Edwards said. “The last three days of deaths are the lowest we have had in over month. We still grieve for every one of them. Right now, we are seventh in the nation in cases per capita. About three weeks ago, we were second.”
Edwards also pointed to the 20,316 residents who are presumed to have recovered from COVID-19, representing more than 68 percent of all positive cases.
That leave just over 9,300 residents with positive cases who have not recovered, Edwards, noting that teh number does not reflect Louisianans who have the virus but have not been tested, such as those are asymptomatic.
Today (May 1), Louisiana reported 28,711 cases of COVID-19 and just over 1,927 deaths.
“That’s a larger increase than we have reported in a number of days, and it’s somewhat startling,” Gov. Edwards said, adding that the case spike is in part the result of two commercials labs that just started reporting their data to the state withing the last 24 hours. Of the 710 new cases, 381 came from those two labs.
“We still have a lot of COVID-19 in our state for sure,” he said. “But we are number seven. That beats being number 2.” Edwards said press briefings will now be held three times a week, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Each Monday, the state will update the number of presumptive recoveries.
Along with state Fire Marshall Butch Browning, Edwards unveiled a new website that business owners and churches can access to get the latest information related to the reopening of the state’s economy at each phase. After registering on opensafely.la.gov, business owners will get specific information they need to ensure they are following reopening guidelines priot to each phase.
Browning said citizens can also go to the site to report concerns over specific businesses following COVID-19 guidelines and mitigation steps, as well as fire code issues.