Federally supplied virus testing kits expected to run out in early August
BATON ROUGE — Louisiana officials are expecting the coronavirus tests that were supplied by the federal government to run out in early August. So far, about 40,000 of those tests have been used, leaving a total of 20,000 available as of Monday, July 27.
The Capitol Park Welcome Center (702 River Road) in downtown Baton Rouge became a government-funded community testing site where locals were able to take advantage of the free COVID-19 testing.
Monday, July 27 will end its use as a testing site and the Welcome Center will close its doors as a testing location for the last time at 5 p.m. that evening.
A list of additional testing locations in the Baton Rouge area can be found here.
Louisiana reported 3,800 new confirmed COVID-19 cases and 48 new deaths related to the disease Sunday.
The state health department figures showed a total of 107,574 confirmed cases and 3,651 deaths.
Hospitalizations dropped since Friday — the last day figures were released — from 1,600 to 1,557. That would be good news, if it continues. Hospitalizations have been trending upward since sinking to 542 on June 13.
The Associated Press reports that increased hospitalizations have been one of the factors that prompted state officials and the city of New Orleans to recently tighten some restrictions aimed at fighting the spread of the virus. Another factor has been the percentage of tests with positive results, which has consistently been above 10 percent.
Bars have been the main focus of recent restrictions. Gov. John Bel Edwards limited bars to take-out or delivery service earlier this month. In New Orleans, Mayor LaToya Cantrell went further, outlawing all take-out sales of alcoholic drinks as of Saturday.
People lining up to get alcoholic drinks were hurting city efforts to keep crowds from gathering, Cantrell said Friday.
The number of COVID-19 patients on ventilators also declined from Friday to Sunday, from 197 to 184. The state says 61,456 people are presumed to have recovered from the virus.
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