The Louisiana Department of Health reported 1,645 more coronavirus cases, 27 more deaths and 2 more hospitalizations in its daily noon update Sunday.

The LDH said Sunday's data includes a backlog of 532 cases with specimen collection dates as far back as July 1, making weekend numbers even more difficult to use as a gauge of where trends are heading, which has generally been in the right direction in recent weeks.

As of this morning, (Monday, August 31) Louisiana is reporting 147,867 total confirmed cases of coronavirus, 4,768 deaths, and 902 patients requiring hospitalization. See the LDH dashboard.

We are worried that a new surge of cases could pop up across the state. Ahead of Hurricane Laura the state began providing temporary shelter to more than 2,100 evacuees, but more than 1,900 of them are being housed in “non-congregate shelters,” such as hotel and motel rooms. Normal evacuation centers were used only as a last resort. In total, more than 500,000 people in Texas and Louisiana faced evacuation orders due to the storm.

Also, many testing sites were forced to close due to the storm, essentially leaving us "flying blind" in assessing our state's fight against COVID-19.

“My biggest concern right now on Covid is that we don’t have the robust testing taking place across the state right now that we need in order to know if our positivity is inching up or whether we have more cases,” said Gov. Edwards as his news briefing on Thursday. “We really need to get back to our testing just as soon as we possibly can.”

Edwards said southwest Louisiana was the hottest region in the state for positive cases of the virus even before the historic storm slammed into Cameron Parish near Lake Charles around 1 a.m. Thursday. Read more from The Advocate.

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