Edwards said that Omicron is less virulent but there are many people who are severely sick and in hospitals. 92 children were admitted to the hospital during the week of January 2 which Edwards said is higher than the number of children admitted during Delta’s peak in 2021. The increase in cases is largely related to the Omicron variant. In his last press conference, Edwards noted that Omicron has had a direct impact on the state and has rapidly taken over as the dominant variant. According to Dr. Joseph Kanter, Omicron accounts for 95 to 100 percent of cases reported in Louisiana.
11 new deaths were also reported on Thursday. On Thursday, the state also eclipsed the 2021 record of hospitalizations. There are now 2,081 individuals hospitalized with COVID; 129 are on mechanical ventilators.
See the latest COVID numbers, here. In his briefing Edwards discussed the increase in the number of cases in the state. On January 12, Louisiana broke the single-day record for coronavirus cases with 17,592 reported cases. The last record was set on January 7, 2022, when the state reported 14,802 cases in a single day.
Kanter added the number of people getting sick with COVID is still creating a very large burden on hospitals and that three out of every four patients in hospitals with COVID are unvaccinated. “You still can get sick and we’re thankful that the average is that less people are getting sick with Omicron, but that’s just an average, it doesn’t guarantee that you won’t that sick. That chance is still there,” he said. “The numbers still add up.” “The volume of testing is considerably more than we have ever done at any point prior in this pandemic,” Kanter said.
The state is reportedly testing more individuals for COVID than ever. Kanter said that over 600,000 residents have been tested in the month of January. “We are still very much in this omicron surge,” he said.
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