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Today's COVID-19 Update shows the total number of confirmed cases across the state is 1,795 across 48 parishes. The number of deaths has increased to 65. Locally that means 2 cases reported in Allen Parish, 3 in Beauregard Parish, 11 in Calcasieu with 1 death, 2 in Natchitoches, 14 in Rapides with 1 death, 0 in Sabine and 2 in Vernon Parishes. There have been 2037 tests run by the state and 9414 by Commercial Labs. All of these numbers will be shared on the West Central's Best Web Page and our Facebook page with the by-parish breakdown.

Gov. Edward addressed that state this afternoon regarding the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic. He thanked President Trump for signing the Emergency Declaration so quickly and Sen Kennedy for reaching out to Pres. Trump regarding the request.

There are 5 states currently with Emergency Declarations: New York, California, Washington, Louisiana, and Iowa.

Gov. Edwards referenced today's numbers for the pandemic and made the point several times that the mitigation efforts only work if we follow them and everyone needs to do their part so we can flatten curve and slow the spread of the virus.

Gov. Edwards listed the first week of April as the earliest date we could overrun the capacities of our hospitals and not have the needed ventilators available for patients.

He noted the blood banks are short on blood – if you can give, reach out to LifeShare and make an appointment to go in, and food banks are short on food. Cash donations allow them to purchase items they know they need.

When asked about students returning to school Gov. Edwards admitted he didn't have that answer, BESE and the DOE are working to answer that question.

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