The Louisiana Department of Health has issued its Thursday COVID update, which gave a third-straight day of COVID hospitalization decreases. 

COVID Hospitalizations dropped from 1,544 to 1,524 in the past 24 hours. Ventilator use also dropped from 221 yesterday to 205.

These are very good signs - a third-straight day of gains for our hospital system after more than a month of steady increases.

Hospitalizations are considered the best measure of progression or regression in a pandemic that's now many months old. 

When in lockdown and throughout Phase 1, our COVID hospitalization numbers dropped from 2,100+ hospitalized due to COVID to 543. 

In Phase 2, those numbers steadily increased back to 1,600 patients hospitalized with coronavirus. The past three days have been the first signs of a downward trend since we've been in Phase 2. 

For Region 3, COVID hospitalizations are flat. They were 69 patients hospitalized with COVID both yesterday and today. But ventilator use dropped from 7 to 5, which is good news.

In terms of total cases, the state now reports 114,481 total COVID cases, the third-straight day we've seen fewer than 2,000 total cases added to our state's totals. 

The new cases come from tests processed in the past 24 hours.

The state processed 22,259 tests in the new update. 

Adding 1,708 new cases in 22,259 processed tests is a 7.6% positive rate, which is considered a strong number, another sign of possible progress and things trending in the right direction.

Louisiana deaths now number 3,811. They were 3,769 yesterday. Medical experts warn that Louisiana death totals may be high in the coming weeks, because of the large number of patients hospitalized in recent weeks. If the state can continue to control its hospitalizations intake in the coming weeks, that number, too, should begin to level off. 

For Lafourche Parish, total COVID cases number 2,468. They were 2,446 yesterday. This is a far smaller increase that we'd been averaging in recent weeks, which is a good sign.

The parish has 96 COVID deaths, the same number as yesterday.

There were 180 processed COVID tests in Lafourche yesterday. Adding 22 new cases to 180 processed tests is a 12.2% positive rate, which is higher than the 10% goal the Federal Government sets as a benchmark, but is lower than the 15-16% rates we'd had in recent days. 


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