Wednesday, August 4, 2021
With the interest of the health and safety of our citizens in mind, I am following the advice of medical professionals in re-issuing the mask mandate in St. Tammany Parish.
Over the last 18 months, we have made remarkable efforts in mitigating the spread of COVID-19, however, all progress has been lost. Sadly, COVID-19 cases continue to skyrocket, well beyond previous records set earlier this year. Local hospitals have also reported record hospitalizations with no signs of slowing down. The Louisiana Department of Health recently reported a 17.7% positivity rate in St. Tammany, which is the highest since December 2020 (16.7%).
Now is the time to refocus our efforts once again on mitigating the spread of the virus. In order to move forward together, we are encouraging all able citizens who have not been vaccinated to do so and wear a mask when with others.
I am pleased to share that single-dose vaccinations in St. Tammany have risen steadily for the last two weeks to 47%. While we have made great strides, they are simply not enough. With an exponential surge to our average daily case count per 100,000 residents, Louisiana is currently ranked as the highest in the country. We must act now more than ever.
Soon, schools will once again be filled with faculty and students. We are encouraging all parents to consult their medical professionals regarding vaccinating their children before they attend school and follow CDC guidelines with regards to masking.
By working together, we can overcome this public health crisis. I know our citizens are exhausted. We all are, but we have not crossed the finish line yet. I challenge each of you to take personal responsibility and to help us move forward towards a healthy and normal future.
As always, should you have questions or if I may be of assistance to you in any way, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
Michael B. Cooper