Covid cases, hospitalizations decline statewide as child deaths increase

Coronavirus
Amanda Shaw Hurricane Ida Benefit Concert

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Though Louisiana is battling a fourth wave of covid, there’s a silver lining in the battle against the disease. Cases and hospitalization are declining throughout the state, as more and more Louisianans get vaccinated.

“Currently, over 45% of the population of Louisiana is completely vaccinated and more than half have initiated their vaccine series, so I think we’re making huge strides in the right direction,” said Dr. Shantel Hébert-Magee, Regional Medical Director with the Louisiana Department of Health.

However, the Delta variant continues to severely impact children across the state, with another child death reported by the Louisiana Department of Health today. Eight children have died in Louisiana during this fourth surge, and in total, 17 children under the age of 18 have died since the pandemic started.

“Babies, they are very susceptible to different viruses and bacteria, so many of those who have been hospitalized are under the age of two that we find in the ICU,” said Dr. Hébert-Magee.

While young children are not yet eligible to get vaccinated, Dr. Hébert-Magee says the best way to protect your child is by setting an example, especially with the holidays coming up.

“Right now, we need everyone to be heroes and heroines. You can be your kids favorite hero, you know, this Halloween by masking up with them,” said Dr. Hébert-Magee.

While Hurricane Ida devastated southeastern Louisiana, Dr. Hébert-Magee says the experience has convinced more people to get vaccinated.

“They realized they may not be in the safety of their own home, it’s more than just the physical building, right? It’s the inhabitance. so for their safety, for the safety of their kids, more people have chosen to get vaccinated.” said Dr. Hébert-Magee.

In an effort to slow the spread of covid in our state, Governor John Bel Edwards announced a shot at 100 vaccine incentive program. Starting today through October 30, anyone who gets their first dose of the covid vaccine at a community-based testing site will be eligible to win $100.

For a full breakdown of covid cases by parish, visit https://ladhh.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/4ecc2bfa2fa54b6eb5c0eccda972d203

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