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After five days, the Louisiana Department of Health has updated its coronavirus dashboard, but it is unclear exactly how accurate the reporting on the COVID-19 virus is in the wake of Hurricane Ida.

According to the Wednesday update, the state saw the decrease in the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations continue, dropping to under 2,500 for the first time since Aug. 6. It also saw a downturn in the number of deaths, averaging about 45 per day over the reporting period as opposed to the record-setting, triple-digit totals from 10 days ago.

Hospitalizations from COVID-19 as of Tuesday were at 2,447, a slight uptick from 2,436 on Monday. The state recorded 223 deaths since Friday, bringing the total to 12,582.

The state data also shows that the number of patients on ventilators decreased Tuesday to 446, down 12 from Monday’s total of 458.

In Region 4, which encompasses the Acadiana area, hospitalizations dropped by 26 Tuesday to 313, from 339 Monday. The region’s number of ventilator cases dropped by four, from 70 Monday to 66 on Tuesday.

Region 4’s ICU bed occupancy was at 174 Tuesday, with only two beds available across the seven-parish area. That put the percentage of occupied ICU beds at 98.9 percent. 

In Region 3, which stretches from St. Mary Parish east to Lafourche and north to St. Charles, 43 of 58 ICU beds were occupied as of Tuesday, but that total is down by 40 from the 96 ICU beds available prior to Ida’s passage. To the west, where Region 5 encompasses the area from Allen, Jefferson Davis and Cameron parishes to the Texas-Louisiana state line, only six of 83 reported ICU beds were available.

The overall hospital bed occupancy in Region 4 dropped to 76.3 percent Tuesday, with 411 of 1,731 beds available.

Iberia Parish had logged 11,458 COVID-19 cases as of Wednesday, an increase of 322 since the last report on Friday. The parish COVID-19 death toll rose by four, to 197. In St. Martin Parish, 154 new cases were identified, bringing the total there to 7,748. The number of deaths rose by four, to 138.

In St. Mary Parish, new cases rose to 7,865, an increase of 111, with deaths rising by two, to 187.

The state has not updated its seven-day test positivity rates as of Wednesday, and has not updated its statewide positivity rate or testing volume figures since Aug. 18.

According to Wednesday’s LDH update, the number of COVID-19 cases reported rose by 12,380 since Friday, to 692,176.

 

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

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