The Louisiana Department of Health showed a slight increase in the demand for ventilators dedicated to COVID-19 patients in the state, but that number is still lower than it had been last week..

On Wednesday, the state reported 490 COID-19 patients on ventilators. That number dropped by 17, to 473, in Thursday’s report. According to Friday’s report, there are currently 479 patients on ventilators, an increase of six.

The number of hospitalizations of COVID-19 patients also rose slightly to 2,054, up 40 from 2,014 on Wednesday.

Although the number of COVID-19 deaths climbed by 53 Friday to 755, that is still a lower daily death rate than had been seen earlier this week. The state reported 70 deaths on Tuesday and again on Wednesday, then 50 on Thursday.

In Friday’s report, LDH said that 19,253 cases of COVID-19 had been identified in the state, up from 18,283 on Thursday and an increase of 970. That is less than the 1,253 increase on Thursday, but slightly more than the increase of  800 Wednesday and still less than the 1,417 increase seen from Monday to Tuesday. 

Tensas Parish continues to hold the distinction of being the only one of the state’s 64 parishes with no reported COVID-19 infections. According to state reports, it is also the only parish to have no recorded COVID-19 tests.

In Iberia Parish, the total of identified cases rose 13 Friday to 121 from Thursday’s total of 108, based on 544 tests in the parish so far. The death toll from COVID-19 remained at five.

St. Martin Parish saw its cases rise from 127 to 140, with the number of COVID-19-attributed deaths remaining at six. There have only been 157 COVID-19 tests performed in the parish.

In St. Mary Parish, the number of cases rose from 89 on Thursday to 100 in Friday's report, with 334 tests performed in the parish. The parish reported its first COVID-19 related death Thursday and also reported yesterday that a resident at the Legacy Nursing Home in Franklin had tested positive for COVID-19.

Lafayette Parish saw an increase of 27 cases, from the 303 reported Thursday to 330 on Friday, with 8,179 tests performed. The parish has reported 12 deaths from COVID-19.

New Orleans was at 5,416 cases, a rise of 174 cases from 5,242 on Wednesday, based on 24,361 COVID-19 tests performed to date. The parish added only one death overnight, climbing to 225. The Jefferson Parish case count has risen by 198 to 4,678 from 4,480 on Friday with seven additional deaths reported, bringing that tally to 165. There have been 5,341 COVID-19 tests administered there.

The state’s reference laboratory has performed 5,159 tests as of Thursday’s report. Commercial laboratories have added another 87,121 tests.

The current number of Louisiana COVID-19 cases identified in the 50-59 age range, the largest group of confirmed cases, rose 154 Friday to 3,963 — including 87 fatalities. In the 40 to 49 age group, the number of cases has risen to 3,444 with 375 deaths reported. In the 60 to 69 age group, there were 3,438 cases reported and 149 deaths. 

The 70 and above group case count rose to 3,153 cases. The number of deaths in that group rose to 456 — the largest number of fatalities for any age group and more than the number of deaths in all other groups combined.

There are 3,072 identified cases in the 30-39 age group, and 20 deaths. The 18 to 29 age group has 2,003 cases and five reported deaths. The under 18 group has 180 cases total, with one death reported.

By gender, the state’s report shows women making up the largest part — 55 percent — of the identified COVID-19 cases in the state,with men comprising 40 percent and the other five percent identified as unknown or other. 

The Wednesday update on nursing homes in the state showed COVID-19 cases have been reported in 91, up from 70 on Monday, of the 436 nursing homes and long-term living facilities in Louisiana. Those cases affect 557 residents, an increase from 363 two days ago. So far, 130 of the state’s COVID-19 deaths, or 20 percent, are residents of long-term care facilities or nursing homes.

Updates on nursing home cases are given two days a week, on Mondays and Wednesdays.

In many cases, according to LDH, health care providers outside of the long-term care facility test and diagnose residents with COVID-19. The facilities then self-report positive cases to LDH. 

A report LDH issued Monday showed more than 70 percent of the victims who have died from COVID-19 in the state are African American. LDH figures showed that 70.48 percent, or 361, of the fatalities recorded as of Monday were in the state’s black community, with 28.61 percent, or 146 victims, listed as white. Five victims were identified as Asian.

The report also indicated that 2 percent of the fatalities, or 10 victims, identified as Hispanic.

Dwayne Fatherree is the community editor for The Daily Iberian. He can be reached at dwayne.fatherree@daily-iberian.com.

Load comments