The death count in Louisiana from the COVID-19 coronavirus has increased to ten, Governor John Bel Edwards told reporters Thursday afternoon.
The latest deaths were both in Orleans Parish - a 44-year-old with underlying medical conditions and a 91-year-old at Lambeth House. The uptown New Orleans retirement, independent and assisted living center has seen 5 deaths and 24 cases alone from the virus.
The number of cases statewide is now 392, according to the Louisiana Department of Health's Thursday afternoon update. 249 cases are in Orleans Parish along with 8 deaths.
Jefferson Parish has 69 cases and one death. The other reported death is in St. James, also the parish's only reported case so far.
St. Tammany and Caddo parishes have 10 cases each. East Baton Rouge has six reported cases, Ascension and West Baton Rouge have two each.
There is also one reported case in Livingston Parish.
The governor's office also announced Thursday that all parishes will have access to Small Business Administration disaster loans in the wake of the COVID-19 epidemic. The low-interest federal loans will be available to businesses that suffered "substantial economic injury" due to the virus. Business owners can begin the application process now online.
“COVID-19 is a unique crisis affecting all walks of life, and that means Louisiana’s small business community will continue to be heavily impacted by disruptions to their operations,” Gov. Edwards said. “We are pleased to work with SBA and the federal government in providing this critical working capital to our small business owners who are suffering from the necessary measures installed due to the Coronavirus. Our hope is that these SBA disaster loans will be an important part of sustaining their businesses and providing support to their employees who make up over half of Louisiana’s private-sector workforce.”