COVID cases climb in parish

By T. Scott Boatright

Over the past two weeks Lincoln Parish has seen an 80% increase in COVID-19 cases.

As Tuesday the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) was reporting Lincoln Parish with 3,412 confirmed COVID cases and 93 deaths with another 1,159 probable cases listed.

That currently puts the parish in a high risk category according to the LDH.

Lincoln Parish is reported to be 27% fully vaccinated for the coronavirus.

Louisiana on Tuesday reported 1,043 new cases of the virus with 13 new deaths, brining Louisiana’s death toll since the outbreak began to 10,548.

As of Tuesday afternoon the state was listing 269 COVID patients hospitalized in Louisiana with 28 of those being on ventilators.

Eight of 10 north Louisiana parishes from Shreveport to Ruston showed increases in their number of cases over a two-week period dating back to Sunday. The uptick in COVID-19 cases in the area comes only days after LSU Health Shreveport’s Center for Emerging Viral Threats identified cases of the new “Indian” (B.1.617.2) variants in the area. Experts believe that variant might be more transmissible than earlier variants.

Gov. John Bel Edwards still had some good news for the people of Louisiana Tuesday afternoon despite those concerns.

During a press conference Edwards said will relax some of the remaining COVID-19 emergency order rules.

That easing of restrictions will include an end to the statewide school mask mandate, meaning that local school districts will still be allowed to set their own mask rules.

Edwards added that face masks will still be required on public transit, health care facilities and prisons.

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