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Hospitals "better off" as fourth COVID case surge dwindles

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Posted at 10:16 PM, Oct 12, 2021

LAFAYETTE, La. — Following a deadly fourth surge in COVID-19 cases in the state, a Lafayette hospital is breathing a sigh of relief as cases significantly drop.

KATC spoke with Dr. Amanda Logue, Chief Medical Officer at Ochsner Lafayette General, about what this means for the health system and the community.

Across five hospitals in the system that house COVID-19 patients, 19 patients are currently being treated for the virus. That’s a significant drop from the peak of the fourth surge, when Ochsner admitted more than 90 COVID-19 patients in a single week.

“From a COVID standpoint, we are much better off than we were even a few weeks ago,” said Dr. Logue.

It’s a sign of optimism and hope among healthcare providers.

“Our teams are really taking advantage of the lull and regrouping, getting some rest, and focusing on other work we’ve had to put off for a while,” she said.

According to LDH on August 17, 3,022 people in Louisiana were hospitalized for COVID-19, plus nearly 450 on ventilators.

On October 11, they reported 506 hospitalizations and around 102 on ventilators.

Dr. Logue says there seems to be a two-month cycle where COVID cases spike, then naturally decrease. She attributes this to the virus mutating from the high spread and human behavior.

“When the infections start going up, we get worried and scared and we put a bunch of measures in place, like masking again, and even if it’s not a mandate,” she said. “People tend to watch the numbers and start protecting themselves.”

With the holidays approaching, Dr. Logue says the key to preventing a fifth surge is to get vaccinated and follow guidelines.

“If people have gotten their vaccine, especially if they have gotten their booster if they qualify, then they can feel pretty confident in going into the holidays if they’re protecting themselves with everything they have,” she said.

Dr. Logue says healthcare providers, including herself, are cautiously optimistic at how quiet the hospitals are in terms of COVID-19. Still, she says they’re not letting their guard down. There’s always an edge of what’s coming next.

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