NEW ORLEANS — Louisiana is nearing another grim COVID-19 milestone: more than 1 million cases of the disease since the pandemic began nearly two years ago.
The Louisiana Department of Health reported 14,158 new cases of the virus on Friday, bringing the total number of cases in the state to 996,623 since March 2020. As the state continues to report thousands of new cases daily, it’s likely that Louisiana will report its millionth case by early next week.
In recent days, Louisiana has repeatedly broken new records for single-day increases in new cases, setting new records four times since Dec. 30. Dr. Joseph Kanter, Louisiana's State Health Officer, said Thursday that Omicron cases have not yet peaked.
Hospitalizations continue to rise across the state. The health department said there were 2,173 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 on Thursday, an increase of 92 people compared to the previous day’s report.
The rise of hospitalizations in Region 1 (Southshore of Greater New Orleans area) has seemingly stalled in recent days. The region reported its first decline in hospitalizations in two weeks on Wednesday, and it only saw an increase of six patients on Thursday.
The LDH also reported 10 additional deaths due to the virus. In total, 15,137 deaths in Louisiana have been linked to COVID-19.