Unvaccinated Louisiana residents face heightened risk of COVID-19 amid new spike

By: - July 14, 2021 5:34 pm
Virus reaches new record of hospitalizations in Louisiana

A “prone team,” wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), prepares to turn a COVID-19 patient onto his stomach in a Stamford Hospital intensive care unit (ICU), on April 24, 2020 in Stamford, Connecticut. Photo by John Moore | Getty Images

With a confirmed surge in COVID-19 cases, the Louisiana Health Department warned residents that unvaccinated people were at much higher risk during the ongoing pandemic.

On Wednesday, the state reported 1,936 new COVID-19 cases, 10 new deaths, 468 COVID-19 patients hospitalized and 40 COVID-19 patients on ventilators. 

Since May, according to the health department, 94% of all new COVID-19 cases in Louisiana have occurred among unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated people. 

“The data are very clear,” said Dr. Joseph Kanter, Louisiana’s State Health Officer, said in a statement Tuesday.  “COVID-19 cases among unvaccinated people in Louisiana are surging. COVID-19 hospitalizations, percent positivity and COVID-19 outbreaks are all on the rise. All people in Louisiana, especially those who are not yet vaccinated, should know they are now at increased risk of exposure to COVID-19 due to the more transmissible Delta variant, and they should consider their personal risk and their family’s risk.”

 COVID-19 hospitalization numbers throughout Louisiana have been rising in the last two weeks. In the last 29 days, the number of new cases diagnosed each day has also been increasing. According to the LDH, the statewide average daily number of cases per 100,000 residents rose 167% over the last two weeks.

Statewide percent positivity of new COVID-19 cases has also increased over the past four weeks and is currently at 6.3%. In the last week, the LDH identified 35 new outbreaks and 200 new outbreak-associated cases, making a 169% increase in the number of reported outbreaks and a 96% increase in the number of outbreak-associated cases compared to the week prior. 

Areas that have the greatest increases in outbreak cases include camps, religious services, child day cares and restaurants. 

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Rachel Mipro
Rachel Mipro

Rachel Mipro is a contributing reporter to the Illuminator. She has previous experience at WBRZ and The Reveille and earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Louisiana State University. At LSU, she worked as an opinion editor for The Reveille and as a nonfiction editor for the university’s creative writing journal. In her free time, she enjoys baking, Netflix and hiking.