The Army Corps of Engineers will open the Bonnet Carre Spillway at 10 a.m. Friday morning to ease pressure on Mississippi River levees in the New Orleans area.

Paul Braun / WRKF

Coronavirus may have taken root in New Orleans, but now it is branching out across the state. East Baton Rouge Parish and Ascension got their first cases earlier this week. 

Reporter Paul Braun spoke with Dr. Catherine O’Neal, Chief Medical Officer and infectious disease specialist for Our Lady of the Lake, about how hospitals in the capital region are preparing.

Courtesy: The Rouge Collection

Louisiana is taking steps to prevent the spread of coronavirus in state prisons and jails.

On Tuesday, East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff Sid Gautreaux announced strict visitation limits at the parish jail, in the latest effort to limit the spread of coronavirus among vulnerable populations. District Attorney Hillar Moore, meanwhile, said his office is looking into ways to reduce the jail population while balancing considerations of public health and public safety.

Paul Braun / WRKF

Gov. John Bel Edwards said the state will be limiting visitation in nursing homes, prisons and jails over the next 30 days to curtail the spread of coronavirus among at risk populations.

Edwards’ announcement came in a joint press conference with U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams Thursday morning.


The number of people infected with coronavirus in Louisiana continues to rise. 

State health officials identified multiple cases on Tuesday, one day after the first case was detected in the state.

First Case of Coronavirus Reported in Louisiana

Mar 9, 2020
Alissa Eckhert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM / CDC

The Louisiana Department of Health has reported the state's first "presumptive positive" case of COVID-19, commonly referred to as coronavirus, according to the office of the governor. 

The United States Supreme Court heard arguments today in the first major abortion case of the Trump Era, considering the constitutionality of a Louisiana law that would require abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital.

Hannah A Bullock; Azaibi Tamin / CDC

Nearly 84,000 people in at least 56 countries have fallen ill as the coronavirus spreads across the world. Earlier this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the first case of coronavirus in a person who had no known history of travel to China, raising concerns of potential "community spread" of the disease, which is also known as COVID-19.

While Louisiana officials say the risk of contracting coronavirus remains low, preparations are well underway.

Dr. Joseph Kanter, assistant state health officer and a regional medical director for the Office of Public Health, talks about how the state is preparing for the potential spread of the coronavirus.