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Elective medical procedures will resume in Louisiana next week, Governor announces

Doctors will be able to perform treatments or surgeries to help patients avoid further harm from underlying conditions or diseases and for time sensitive conditions.

NEW ORLEANS — Elective medical procedures that are time sensitive will resume in Louisiana next week.

Gov. John Bel Edwards announced on Monday, April 20, that elective medical procedures that meet that criteria will be allowed to resume on April 27.

This allows doctors to perform treatments or surgeries to help patients avoid further harm from underlying conditions or diseases and for time sensitive conditions.

That covers surgeries that are time sensitive and that help patients that could be put a greater risk if their condition is not addressed.

“Anything that might make their condition worse by waiting longer is what we’re trying to lift right now,” Dr. Jimmy Guidry, the director of Louisiana’s Department of Health said. “Any medical condition that gets worse with time. Our hope is to get people in for their medical care and we can deal with the things that may be worse than dealing with corona.”

Guidry noted that medical professionals will decide which procedures need to be done now and which ones can wait. He noted that procedures that can be postponed should continue to be postponed to not put any patients at risk.

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Edwards said that he told the public about the order a week ahead of when it goes into effect to give doctors a chance to make decisions, schedule procedures and gather the necessary PPE to protect themselves and their patients.

Elective surgeries were stopped at the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak to free up hospital resources and prevent exposing more people to the COVID-19.

Hospitalizations for COVID-19 increased slightly after several days of dropping, according to the latest numbers from the Louisiana Department of Health

The total number of patients in the hospital has dropped by more than 200 in the past week but increased by 46 after this weekend's reporting. The total now stands at 1,794 statewide. As it stands, Louisiana's hospital systems are no longer in danger of being overwhelmed.  

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