BATON ROUGE, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Two days before the current executive order requiring COVID-19 restrictions is set to expire, Gov. John Bel Edwards is meeting with public health officials to review the data and determine the next step.
Louisiana’s Phase Two coronavirus restrictions are set to expire on Wednesday.
“We’ve seen improvements in terms of hospitalizations and also test positivity, which is promising, but, as the Governor and Dr. Kanter have said, the number of active cases we have is still high, as are hospitalizations. We remain very concerned about the rise in COVID variants and how quickly they spread, which certainly will inform what the Governor does next.”
The governor’s office also announced Monday that Edwards will be getting his first dose of the coronavirus vaccine on Tuesday afternoon in Baton Rouge.
The Louisiana Department of Health says 378 vaccine providers across the state will receive “very limited doses” of the COVID vaccine this week. That is 54 more providers than last week.
The LDH says these providers — including 112 chain pharmacies, 127 independent pharmacies, 52 hospitals, 15 community health centers (including 13 federally qualified health centers, or FQHCs), six rural health clinics (RHCs), 28 public health providers and 38 other healthcare sites — represent all nine public health regions and 64 parishes of the state.
LDH has published the list of participating providers, along with their locations and contact information, on its website at covidvaccine.la.gov. In addition, residents can call 211 to find a vaccine provider near them.
“Future distribution is dependent on vaccine made available to the state, among other factors,” according to the LDH. “To stress, there is no guarantee that providers receiving vaccine this week will receive vaccine in the future.”
These vaccines will be available only for the following populations in Phase 1B, Tier 1:
- Persons 65 and older
- Dialysis providers and patients
- Ambulatory and outpatient providers and staff
- Behavioral health providers and staff
- Urgent care clinic providers and staff
- Community care providers and staff
- Dental providers and staff
- Professional home care providers (including hospice workers) and home care recipients (including older and younger people with disabilities over the age of 16 who receive community or home-based care, as well as clients of home health agencies)
- Interpreters and Support Service Providers (SSPs) working in community and clinic-based settings, and clients who are both deaf and blind
- Health-related support personnel (lab staff, mortuary staff who have contact with corpses, pharmacy staff)
- Schools of allied health students, residents and staff
Participating providers must make available vaccine available to anyone who is eligible, and the state says failure to do so will inform future decisions about distribution.
Eligible residents must contact a participating provider and make an appointment with them. Patients who arrive without an appointment will not be vaccinated. LDH cannot make appointments for patients; only providers can.
The state department of health also says patients should receive their second doses of the COVID vaccine at the same location where they received their first dose. Second-dose appointments should be made during the administration of the first dose.
“The Louisiana Department of Health is coordinating the COVID-19 vaccine distribution effort in Louisiana. As more vaccines become available from the CDC, more individuals and groups will be offered a vaccination. We want everyone to have the opportunity to get vaccinated against COVID. We are confident that COVID-19 vaccines will be a critical tool in ultimately ending the pandemic.”
More than 404,000 people in Louisiana have received at least their first dose of the two-dose COVID-19 immunization so far, with nearly 131,000 people getting both doses, according to the latest health department data. Louisiana ranked 15th among states as of Thursday in the number of vaccine doses administered per capita, according to the CDC.
The Louisiana Department of Health reported 1,184 new COVID-19 cases on Monday and 23 new deaths, bringing the total number of cases statewide to 412,989 and deaths to 9,142. Of the new cases reported since Sunday, the LDH says 1,102 are confirmed and 82 are probable.
If you have a fever or cough, you might have COVID-19. Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home. Keep track of your symptoms. If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), get medical attention right away.