Louisiana governor says coronavirus patients soon to overwhelm hospitals

Published 11:23 am Sunday, March 29, 2020

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday morning he’s very concerned about the remaining capacity of the hospitals in his state, which has become the epicenter of sorts for COVID-19 coronavirus cases in the South.

“We remain on a trajectory, really, to overwhelm our capacity to deliver health care,” Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said on ABC’s “This Week.” “By the end of the first week in April, we think the first real issue is going to be ventilators. And we think it’s about the fourth or fifth of April before, down in the New Orleans area, we’re unable to put people on ventilators who need them. And then several days later, we will be out of beds.”

He said officials have orders out for more than 12,000 ventilators through the national stockpile and private vendors, but so far have only been able to get 192.

Through Saturday, Louisiana had reported 3,540 cases of coronavirus and 151 deaths as a result of the virus.

On Sunday, 1,127 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized in Louisiana. That was 220 more patients than the prior day. Of those hospitalized, 380 patients were on ventilators.

The number of hospitalization and patients needing ventilators has been rapidly increasing over the last week, health department stats indicate.

In addition, the state has identified COVID-19 clusters in 20 long-term care facilities in the state. A cluster is defined as two more cases among residents or staff of the facilities.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.