Gov. Edwards: State seeing 'early signs' of case plateau; urges continued compliance
BATON ROUGE - At his Tuesday COVID-19 press conference, Gov. John Bel Edwards hinted at positive signs in the state's effort to slow the spread.
"We are seeing early signs, at least, of a plateauing of our cases, which is obviously a good thing," Edwards said.
Edwards offered a cautiously optimistic tone while delivering the state's latest coronavirus data. The biggest piece of that data driving the governor's message was the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19, which has been steadily rising for weeks.
"Basically over the last six days, our hospitalizations have been flat," Edwards said. "That's the first time that's happened in a very long time."
As of July 22, 1,581 patients were hospitalized with the coronavirus statewide. While that number has gone up and down over the past week, the net increase has only been two, with 1,583 people hospitalized as of Tuesday.
Also included in Tuesday's numbers were 1,125 new cases, the lowest daily increase since July 6. While that could eventually become a trend, Edwards warns one day of data shouldn't be anyone's focus.
"Nobody should look at anybody's one day report and draw too many inferences from it," Edwards said. "We should take those things on rolling averages, somewhere between a three-day and seven-day rolling average, in order to see what we're doing."
If these positive numbers are to turn into sustained trends, Edwards says it'll only be because people are following the restrictions, including wearing a mask and social distancing. Those restrictions, now in place for two weeks, could start impacting data, Edwards says.
As Louisiana remains in 'phase two' with July ending, Edwards focused on a point he has been making repeatedly during earlier stages of Louisiana's COVID-19 fight.
"If everybody would cut, at least, in half, the number of times they leave their homes, that would have a tremendously positive impact on reducing the transmission of this disease," Edwards said.
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