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LCG: Flattening the curve stretches the timeframe for reopening

Posted at 9:48 AM, Apr 28, 2020

LAFAYETTE, La. — On Tuesday, April 28, Lafayette Consolidated Government held its daily media briefing on the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency.

Lafayette Mayor-President addressed the announcement from Gov. John Bel Edwards yesterday that the state's Stay-At-Home Order would be extended to May 15.

Guillory said he knew that many people may have been disappointed and frustrated at the announcement, but acknowledged that the governor was working in good faith to follow the federal guidelines established by President Donald Trump to reopen the state.

Guillory pointed to the state and local timeline where the first case of COVID-19 was recorded in the state was March 9, and the first in Lafayette was March 19.

Guillory said that Lafayette and the Acadiana region were fortunate to get ahead of the virus surge that allowed the region to trail behind state hotspots like Orleans Parish in cases and deaths.

According to Guillory, flattening the curve in the region stretched the timeline for recovery and plans to start reopening.

"As we forecasted back then, we have successfully avoided the most severe impacts of the virus while also extending things out a little further," said Guillory. "We never had the massive spike in cases and are still working through our cases."

Guillory said that Lafayette Parish is doing well and noted that it had just gone eight days without a death being reported.

Cases here have slowed to a trickle, he said, but the region is still seeing more fatalities and cases.

Guillory added that Lafayette is earlier in the cycle than other hard hit areas in the state, and they are trying to ramp up testing in the area.

Guillory said that LCG is continuing to do everything they can to to work together to get ready for when Phase 1 of federal guidelines in two weeks.

diligently to follow federal guidelines and the emergency declarations from Gov. John Bel Edwards to get local businesses up and running again.

Dr. Tina Stefanski, Louisiana Department of Health Region 4, also spoke during the briefing to urge citizens to continue social distancing measures, wear masks properly when out in public and to wash hands vigorously.

Stefanski reminded residents not to get overheated while wearing their masks out in the heat and not to wear them while driving in a car for long distances.

She also said that testing will begin soon at the Northside Community Health Center at 1800 Louisiana Ave., in Lafayette. Those seeking to get tested are asked to call 337-678-9000 to set an appointment.

Stefanski also said that while the numbers in our region are slowly trending down residents should continue to listen to local leaders because those numbers could increase.

LCG also announced that Chick-Fil-A is donating 3,000 meals for people in the community who are unemployed and suffering from the outbreak. The meals will be distributed for the next three Saturdays (May 2, 9 & 16) at 11 a.m. at Brown Park, 1234 E. Pont des Mouton Road, in Lafayette.

During Monday's briefing, Lafayette Mayor-President Josh Guillory announced that LCG employees will report back to work on Monday, May 4. He did not, however, provide a date for when LCG buildings and facilities will be open to the public.

Guillory said that LCG is continuing to work diligently to follow federal guidelines and the emergency declarations from Gov. John Bel Edwards to get local businesses up and running again.

He said that he was having no problems with businesses following the Safe Shop Policy and that the fire and police departments reporting businesses were being proactive during their compliance checks.

As of Tuesday, April 28, Lafayette Parish was reporting 446 coronavirus cases and 21 deaths. An increase in three cases and three deaths from Monday.

The Louisiana Department of Health updates their numbers each day at noon.

To see the latest from LDH and a breakdown by parish, click here.

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