COVID volunteers

The curve is not growing flatter.

According to the Louisiana Department of Health, it's currently growing steeper.

Thursday, Gov. John Bel Edwards hosted another press conference to inform the public and media of the ever-changing circumstances of the novel coronavirus and it's effect on Louisiana.

The governor said the new date expected, by models, for New Orleans to run out of ventilators is Apr. 2. The region 1 healthcare system, which encompasses Orleans, Jefferson, and other surrounding parishes, is expected to be overwhelmed with new patients by the next week, Apr. 7 - Apr. 10.

Ventilators and personal protective equipment are in short supply, but so are healthcare workers, especially in region 1. These workers face the virus daily, and can potentially contract it - Ochsner reported that 300 of their workers are in quarantine, with roughly 80 testing positive for the virus.

In order to surge emergency capacity for coronavirus cases, the state needs more ventilators and beds - but also staff to work those new posts as more healthcare facilities come online.

In that vein, the state of Louisiana and Department of Health have created a website where individuals can volunteer their services. Current, former, or newly minted healthcare professionals are asked to apply.

"If you are a healthcare student, graduate, or an active member/retiree of the healthcare workforce, please sign up to volunteer your time and talent to help the State and our healthcare system meet the challenges of COVID-19," the volunteer website says. "We are looking for volunteers with backgrounds in the fields of medicine, nursing, allied health professions, dentistry, counseling, mental/behavioral health, laboratory science, among others.

"This is a partnership of all higher education institutions in Louisiana, led by the University of Louisiana System and Louisiana State University, to mobilize our students and graduates in healthcare professions."

If you can volunteer, tap this link ---->

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