LDH: Majority of COVID-19 deaths in St. Landry Parish are at nursing homes

Deaths now at 28
Posted at 6:18 PM, Apr 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-22 00:03:58-04

At an Opelousas council meeting on Tuesday, Dr. Tina Stefanski with the Office of Public Health said that the number of deaths in St. Landry Parish are overwhelmingly from nursing homes.

At the meeting, Stefanski discussed the continued compliance with the social distancing order and the current affects the virus is having on nursing homes in the area.

She confirmed that 25 of now 28 deaths in the parish were in nursing homes, stating that the virus most likely transferred to residents there by nursing home workers. The names of the nursing homes were not given.

Mayor Julius Alsandor said he could not give exact numbers but is aware the the City of Opelousas is leading the parish in the number of deaths.

Council members asked for clarification on who is most susceptible to the virus and while the majority of cases in the parish are elderly or older residents, some younger individuals are being hospitalized but are recovering. Stefanski clarified that the average age of death from COVID-19 is 83 nearly all had underlying illnesses.

Dr. Kenneth Cochran, President and CEO of Opelousas General Health System was also called to speak at the meeting. He touched on social distancing and the continued flattening of the curve.

"The number of new cases has been declining," Cocharn said. He mentioned that the decline is cases is why the city is talking more about what steps they can do to help open up to residents.

Alsandor did not give specifics if any plans were in place to do so or when that might happen.

Stefanski says that nursing homes are taking extra precaution to stop the spread of the virus. LDH is monitoring developments in those facilities.

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