Governor Edwards gives update on COVID-19 Response

Governor John Bel Edwards gave an update on Louisiana’s response to the coronavirus pandemic at a press conference at 2:30 pm, amidst speculations that the nationwide rate of growth for COVID-19 cases is beginning to slow.

Edwards stated that as of noon on April 8, the Louisiana Department of Health reported 746 new positive cases of COVID-19 and 70 new deaths, bringing the total number to 17,030 and 652 deaths.

The numbers of new hospitalizations, according to Edwards, are slightly down from yesterday’s count and the rate of growth suggests that the state is on a lower trajectory of case growth.

“The simple fact of the matter is that the number of hospitalizations suggests that we are on the right track,” said Edwards. “Overall, we think that we are heading in a better direction and we are starting to flatten the curve, but we do not know yet.”

Edwards emphasized that although he feels the numbers are looking better, the citizens of Louisiana cannot let their guard down.

“I am imploring everyone to continue to comply with the stay at home order and continue to engage in social distancing if you are out,” stated Edwards.

Edwards also announced that Shreveport will set up a testing center in a local Walmart, the first such center in the state. He also stated that a similar testing facility is planned in St. John the Baptist Parish.

Despite numbers that suggest the curve is beginning to flatten in the state, Edwards expressed that no one is certain when life will return to normal.

“The virus will dictate the timeline,” said Edwards. “We do believe that we are starting to see the flattening of the curve, but the cases can still spike.”