NEW ORLEANS, La. (KLFY)- The number of positive COVID-19 cases has risen to 171. Four people have died. The Louisiana Department of Health said 12 parishes have seen positive COVID-19 cases. 457 people in Louisiana have been tested so far for the virus.
Those parishes with cases are around the mostly New Orleans area, but officials expect other cases to be detected elsewhere around the state. The parishes reporting cases are: Orleans, Jefferson, St. Tammany, Caddo, St. Charles, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. Bernard, Ascension, Bossier, St. John the Baptist and Washington.
The state’s elderly population remains the most vulnerable, the governor said, which is why public gathering of more than 50 people have been canceled for at least a month.
This includes churches with large congregations, he added.
But Edwards noted that this does not apply to malls, grocery stores and other businesses.
On Friday, Edwards signed a proclamation closing all schools statewide until April 13. All of Louisiana’s higher education systems have moved courses online.
If you feel slightly sick, stay home, Edwards said.
“It’s time to be good neighbors to one another, and this is being a good neighbor,” he added.
Edwards said state agencies have been given authority to make the decision on whether employees can work remotely.
Basic public hygiene is still the best way to prevent the disease. Soap and water is more effective than hand sanitizer.
Edwards said officials remain vigilant in containing virus, which could mean possible extensions of closures in the coming weeks.
“This state has been tested and tried many time,” he said. “This test is a little different,”