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Louisiana tops 400,000 COVID-19 cases, death toll nears 9,000

Sunday's data, which covers the entire weekend because LDH does not release data on Saturdays, saw 3,355 new cases and 58 new deaths reported.

NEW ORLEANS — Louisiana has seen more than 400,000 coronavirus cases since the outbreak of the virus began in March.

New data released Sunday by the Louisiana Department of Health shows just over 400,000 confirmed cases of the disease across Louisiana. 

Of those, about 344,000 patients have recovered and more than 8,000 have died, meaning the state estimates around 50,000 active cases in Louisiana.

 The fight against the coronavirus has had its ups and downs, with several spikes in the data following times when people have not adhered to social distancing mandates. The most recent of these, just after the winter holidays, rivaled the pandemic's darkest point in April. 

But vaccinations are on their way. The state estimates about 1% of Louisiana's 4.6 million residents have completed the two-shot vaccination process, with more halfway done. 

Although vaccine efforts have had supply roadblocks, President Joe Biden's administration has publicly announced a plan to purchase enough vaccine doses for every eligible person in the country, and to have a majority of them distributed by summer's end. 

But in Louisiana, that wait will lead to more deaths. The state is fast approaching 9,000 deaths from COVID-19, and will hit that grim milestone before the end of February based on current trends. 

Sunday's data, which covers the entire weekend because LDH does not release data on Saturdays, saw 3,355 new cases and 58 new deaths reported.

But there is some good news. More than 130 fewer hospitalizations were reported over the weekend, bringing the state's total down to 1,416 patients. At the height of the third spike in early January, around 2,000 patients were hospitalized with COVID-19. 

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