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Gov. Edwards updates timeline for running out of vents, hospital beds in S. Louisiana


BATON ROUGE, La. (KTAL/KMSS) –  Gov. John Bel Edwards says Region 1, which covers the hardest hit area of Louisiana and includes Orleans and Jefferson parishes, is on track to exceed capacity for ventilators as early as April 4 and to run out of available hospital beds by April 7.

RELATED: Projection models predict COVID-19 pandemic will peak in Louisiana on April 8

In his Tuesday briefing from Baton Rouge on the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Edwards announced that President Donald Trump has approved 150 additional ventilators for Louisiana and that the state has about 14,000 more on order from the national stockpile and private vendors.

Watch the full briefing here:

Edwards said 292 ventilators arrived on Monday, about 100 of them from the national stockpile.

Overall, the state has added 1,212 new confirmed cases Tuesday, more than doubling the number of cases reported Monday. 239 people have now died in Louisiana from the coronavirus since the first case was reported on March 9. The state’s first death was reported on March 14.

Edwards also announced that he has authorized the addition of 1,000 beds to be set up at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, where work to set up 1,000 was already underway.

Those beds are expected to be used to free up space at hospitals statewide that are needed for critically ill patients.

RELATED: New COVID-19 deaths in Caddo, Bossier bring total in NWLA to 11

The Department of Health also confirmed Tuesday it has identified COVID-19 clusters in 40 long-term care facilities in the state, including three in Northwest Louisiana.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards said Tuesday he plans to extend the state’s stay-at-home order to reflect the nation’s new April 30 timeline.

He said the proclamation will be signed by the end of this week. 

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