Former health secretary: Louisiana 'overloading' hospital capacity as coronavirus cases surge

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Amid the sharp uptick of coronavirus cases in Louisiana, former Louisiana Health Department Secretary Rebekah Gee told Fox News on Thursday that the Pelican State’s medical facilities need immediate support.

“We are overloading our capacity,” Gee told “America’s Newsroom," noting that Gov. John Bel Edwards said there are 10 days until the virus peaks.

“We have time before then, we are not New York yet. We will look like New York. We have time to prepare.”

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Lousiana and Ohio became the latest states Sunday to announce they would issue sweeping restrictions urging citizens to stay at home in an effort to stop the spread of coronavirus.

Edwards said the "stay at home order," which would go into effect Monday, was a necessary measure to "flatten the curve" and protect even more people from becoming infected with COVID-19, even as the number of cases statewide climbed to over 830 people with 20 deaths to date, according to state health officials.

“The bottom line is, we are in a race against time when it comes to this coronavirus and its rapid spread in Louisiana,” the governor said Sunday.

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Gee, the CEO of LSU healthcare services, said Louisiana is manufacturing masks and shields and doctors are “ordering bunny suits on eBay.” Gee also said that supplying ventilators is a “need of focus” because procuring them is a challenge.

“There needs to be a national strategy to deploy ventilators when they’re needed, where they’re needed and have appropriate oversight," she stressed.

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“You also can’t manufacture pulmonary critical care doctors and the types of people who understand this. So we should think about plans to use doctors in other states where they’re not having the level of problem that we have here and help use telemedicine and other tele-technologies to help create a national response to this problem.

Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran contributed to this report.