Coronavirus new

Louisiana reported more than 1,400 new cases of the novel coronavirus on Sunday.

Due to a planned power outage, the Louisiana Department of Health did not update its dashboard on Saturday, meaning Sunday’s results are from the last two days.

Across the state, there have now been a confirmed 56,236 COVID-19 cases, an increase of 1,467 from Friday’s update. According to health officials, 96 percent of the new cases were the result of community spread, and 43 percent were among people 29 years old or younger.

The statewide COVID-19 death toll reached 3,086 fatalities on Sunday, an increase of nine from the previous update. The state is also reporting 113 “probable” deaths from the novel coronavirus.

COVID-19 hospitalizations continued their recent rise, increasing by 15 over the last two days to reach 715. Hospitalizations have increased in nine of the Department of Health’s last 12 updates. Since June 14, COVID-19 hospitalizations have risen by 173.

Ventilator usage also rose by three on Sunday to 76 statewide.

According to officials, Louisiana has now conducted 696,111 COVID-19 tests, either through the state lab (34,854) or commercial labs (661,257). That’s an increase of 18,105 tests from the last update, which puts Sunday’s positivity rate at 8.1 percent.

On Thursday, Gov. John Bel Edwards formally extended Phase Two of Louisiana’s reopening. The earliest the state could enter Phase Three would be Friday, July 24.

The new order, which went into effect June 26, leaves in place occupancy and other restrictions of the previous Phase Two order. It also limits indoor gatherings to 250 people.

Edwards announced the signing of the newest proclamation Thursday night, saying data from the last three days has made it “crystal clear” the state isn’t ready to advance to Phase Three, which would loosen more restrictions that were put in place to slow the spread of COVID-19.

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