However, there are still patient capacity and medical staffing concerns as the 15 hospitals around the state are without available ICU beds, Edwards said.
BATON ROUGE, La. (KLFY)- Though the state is fifth in the U.S. for growth in cases of COVID-19, Louisiana is no longer considered a red zone state, according to standards implemented by the White House Coronavirus Task Force.
During Tuesday’s state press briefing, Gov. John Bel Edwards said the statewide test positivity rate is now at 9.4 percent, which he called a sign of encouragement.
The state Department of Health and Hospitals reported fewer than 650 new cases on Tuesday.
However, there are still patient capacity and medical staffing concerns as the 15 hospitals around the state are without available ICU beds, the governor said.
This week, Edwards said he will monitor LDH data and follow the White House’s Opening Up America Again plan, as he considers whether to extend Phase 2 restrictions, which are set to expire on Aug. 28.
The reopening of schools and colleges is expected to further complicate matters as studies have shown that younger people are spreading the virus at a higher rate to the state’s more vulnerable population.
Edwards said the Louisiana Department of Education is currently working with LDH to create a COVID-19 reporting system to assist health-safety concerns from parents, students and education staff.
On Wednesday, state health care officials are scheduled to meet with higher education officials on campus reopening plans.
You can watch the full August 18, 2020, press briefing here: