Edwards: We will shut down 'bad actors' before going back to Phase One

Officials say COVID spike is not the result of testing, but actual spread


Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards met with the Resilient Louisiana Commission to discuss the spike the state is seeing in coronavirus.  

He says the numbers are headed in the wrong direction.

"They are not getting better, they are getting worse," the governor warned. "Before they get out of control and threaten our ability to deliver health care, we have got to get more compliance."

Edwards says if we don't see more people taking steps to reduce the spread, he may have to close portions of the economy that have reopened.  He prefers, however, to target the specific places that are the source of the spread.

“We’re going to do a more robust job in responding to complaints we receive and doing courtesy visits and making sure that establishments are operating in accordance with these mandates,” said the governor. “I don’t want to shut a single business down, not one.  But I will do that before we have to go back a phase before we allow bad actors who have a negative impact on this state as a whole.”

Louisiana was supposed to be entering Phase Three of reopening Friday, but the governor instead extended Phase Two.

Edwards says the fix is simple.

“The public as well as the businesses are not complying with the mitigation measures that we have in place.  Obviously, the most important one is wearing a mask.”

Louisiana Assistant Health Secretary Dr. Alex Billioux told the Commission that the department of health is seeing signs that the current spike in cases will only get worse soon.  He says more and more people are going to medical facilities reporting symptoms.

"They are really at the highest levels they have ever been, people showing up saying, 'I think I have COVID,' and being tested," according to the doctor. "These are people in the community with COVID and significant increases."

He insists this is not the result of increased testing.

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