NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The head of New Orleans' health department says now is the time to head off a COVID-19 surge like the one last summer.
Dr. Jennifer Avegno says case counts average 155 a day - five times what they were a month ago.
She notes that's a big undercount because many people use home tests. She asked city residents and visitors on Tuesday to mask up in indoor public spaces, get tested if they have been exposed to someone with the disease and - if appropriate - get treated.
She says the city is not ordering masks and vaccinations or boosters, but highly recommending them.
Avegno notes that many city residents followed previous recommendations.
Mayor LaToya Cantrell issued the following statement on the steady rise in COVID-19 levels in the area:
“The City of New Orleans remains vigilant in our response to COVID-19 and is taking the necessary steps to prevent seeing another surge of high infection levels in our city. As recommended by Dr. Jennifer Avegno, who has guided us through the ongoing pandemic since day one, wearing masks indoors, handwashing, vaccinations, boosters, and getting tested when not feeling well continue to be our most effective tools against COVID-19. These measures will help mitigate the rise of infections we are now seeing and have experienced over the last couple years. The COVID-19 pandemic is not over, and we will continue to follow the guidelines set forth by the Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. I am urging residents to protect themselves and utilize the mitigation measures put in place to help prevent another significant surge.”
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