COVID-19 Resources Dashboard
Call your doctor, 311 or 534-TEST to be pre-screened
See testing criteria here
Check local order for clarity
Call 211 with questions
Call 911 to report violations
LA Wallet fees waived
6 p.m. to 8 a.m. for unaccompanied minors
Closed to public
Lafayette Transit System
Open, but expect delays
Taxis & Ride-hailing Services
Delivery available via Waitr, Shipt, Instacart
Essential businesses only
Domestic Abuse Centers
Reader Questions, Answered
What are the common underlying conditions for people who die of COVID-19?
In Louisiana, high blood pressure (66.4%) is the most common condition found among fatal coronavirus cases. Here’s a breakdown of figures as of April 6:
High Blood Pressure (66.4%)
Chronic Kidney Disease (25.1%)
What is community spread?
Community spread means infections are occurring without a trackable source. Early on, COVID-19 cases were typically associated with travel to affected areas. When people get the virus and officials can’t identify where they got it, those cases would be the result of community spread.
Isn’t COVID-19 just a bad flu?
No. COVID-19 is both more deadly and more contagious than the flu. Mortality rates for COVID-19 range between 1-3%. Seasonal flu is 0.1%. In other words, COVID-19’s mortality rate is 10 times higher. COVID-19 has a much higher hospitalization rate. Around 19% of COVID-19 cases are hospitalized. Around 2% of seasonal flu cases are hospitalized.
What do I do if I think I have COVID-19?
Isolate yourself. Call your doctor or call 311 to be pre-screened. This infographic lays out the screening criteria.
Do our hospitals have enough space to handle a surge?
That depends on how fast and how big the surge is. A ProPublica report counts 1,720 hospital beds in a five-parish area around Lafayette. The average occupancy in that zone, called a Hospital Referral Region, is 59%, according to 2018 data analyzed by ProPublica. (Note: This is a different region and figure than the LDH region reported by the State of Louisiana.)
Suppose 20% of the Lafayette MSA (~620,000 people) get the infection. If that happens over 12 months or more, regional hospitals likely could manage it. The same number of infections over six months, however, would push hospital resources in Acadiana roughly 50% overcapacity, ProPublica finds. Read more about this issue here.
Are local hospitals making women give birth alone?
No they are not. At both Lafayette General and Lourdes, which owns Women’s & Children’s, you are still allowed to have one person with you during childbirth.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, both systems have instituted “zero visitor” policies, with limited exceptions, one of which is laboring mothers.
How many ventilators do we have in Lafayette?
There are 209 ventilators in LDH Region 4, a seven-parish area that includes Lafayette. The number available changes frequently. Check here for updates.
How many ICU beds do we have in Lafayette?
There are 168 ICU beds in LDH Region 4, a seven-parish that includes Lafayette. The number available changes frequently. Check here for updates.
How many hospital beds do we have in Lafayette?
There are 1,977 hospital beds in LDH Region 4, a seven-parish that includes Lafayette. The number available changes frequently. Check here for updates.
How soon before enough tests become available locally and statewide?
It’s still unclear both how soon more tests will come and what an adequate supply will look like.
How many tests are available in Lafayette?
Fewer than we need, but officials aren’t saying much more than that. Tests are reserved for severe cases and people at high risk. Local officials are optimistic that testing supplies will continue to grow.
For most people, testing does little. The recommendations remain the same for anyone not at high risk who experiences COVID-like symptoms: stay home and keep your distance from crowds and vulnerable people.
Does Louisiana have any rapid tests?
Yes. Most of the rapid testing supplies are in New Orleans because of the severity of the city’s outbreak. Hospitals in New Orleans have 5-minute, 45-minute and same-day tests available. Commercial labs return tests to Lafayette in a few days.
Why isn’t Lafayette testing everyone with symptoms like they are in New Orleans?
Because there aren’t enough tests locally to test everyone who has symptoms. New Orleans has been hard hit by the virus, so it has more testing supplies available to it.
If I’m tested at the Cajundome, how will I get my results?
A medical provider will call you once results are in. There have been some delays on test results, but officials say results should come back in three or four days.
What are we doing to make sure Spanish speakers can be screened or tested?
Translators are available both at the Cajundome screening site and via 311. You do not need to have U.S. citizenship to be screened. A passport from your country of origin works for identification.
What about people who are undocumented? Can they get screened without fear of being deported?
Yes. Officials haven’t been direct on this issue. But it’s clear public safety is coming first. Mayor-President Josh Guillory said today that Cajundome health workers are only asking health questions and are observing standard medical privacy.
What’s happening with people experiencing homelessness? Are they getting tested or treated?
Shelters are typically maxed out but there’s some emergency space available, including at hotels for people without homes who are at high risk for infection. Space is available at some state parks — these aren’t camp sites, it’s mobile homes and other climate-controlled facilities — for people who need isolation while they await testing results or recover. It’s a voluntary program. That said, there is an acute need to find permanent housing for those without it.
Is public transit still available?
Lafayette Transit System is still operating with no immediate plans to shut down. LTS says there may be system delays associated with efforts to sanitize buses. Fares have been waived. More info
What about Uber and Lyft?
Uber and Lyft paused pooling services starting today. Regular services are still operating.
Any major changes to air travel from LFT?
For the most part, service at LFT has not been impacted, but the airport is taking plenty of cleaning precautions. LFT Executive Director Steven Picou broke down a laundry list of surfaces getting a thorough sanitizing. Travelers are urged to take stock of the prevalence of coronavirus where they’re headed and whether they’re personally at risk or live with someone who is.
My boyfriend is trying to fly home from Nebraska. When he gets to the Lafayette airport, what does he have to do so he can come home?
Whatever he’d typically do. “Once the boyfriend is at LFT, he has a few options,” says Lafayette Regional Airport Executive Director Steven Picou. “[He can] rent a car, call for a taxi or uber, or [your] reader can come and pick him up. There are no special circumstances or things to do once at the airport.”
Government & Public Services
Can I pay my LUS or LUS Fiber bill?
You can still pay by drive-thru or online. Note that disconnections for utility customers have been suspended for 60 days. More info
What precautions are the Lafayette Parish Correctional Center taking?
There are efforts to decrease population at the jail. The jail population has been reduced by at least 60 inmates in the past week, because of the efforts of judges, lawyers and the D.A.’s office, all of whom are working together for the early release of prisoners. Some individuals are bonding out, pleading to time served or probated sentences, or having probation/parole hold lifted. Read more about this issue here.
What’s included in the burn ban — are we talking bbq pits, chimineas, outside kitchens or just full-on bonfires and trash burning?
State Rep. Thomas Pressly of Shreveport posted the following after asking the state fire marshal for clarification: “It does not apply to BBQ (or) campfires (recreational) but applies to all other outdoor burning to include vegetation, trash and other waste.”
How are local governments and other organizations bound by Louisiana Open Meetings Law conducting their business under the stay-at-home order?
Lafayette is resuming its council meetings after a hiatus. City and parish council meetings will go forward, but the councils will not meet jointly. Council Clerk Veronica Williams says they’re looking into options for taking public comment remotely. Other communities are using video conferencing platforms to hold their meetings, but that’s not without problems.
I’m a low-income taxpayer who isn’t required to file a tax return. Will I get a check from the federal relief package?
Yes. According to the IRS, people who typically do not file a tax return will need to file a “simple tax return” with basic information like filing status, number of dependents and bank information so the government can send out an economic impact payment. Low-income taxpayers, senior citizens, Social Security recipients, some veterans and individuals with disabilities who are otherwise not required to file a tax return will not owe tax. The IRS is constantly pushing out FAQs.
Something we didn’t cover? Ask us a question.