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WATCH: Gov. Edwards’ news conference on state’s COVID-19 response

FILE: Gov. John Bel Edwards speaks Monday, May 11, 2020, at his media briefing on the state's...
FILE: Gov. John Bel Edwards speaks Monday, May 11, 2020, at his media briefing on the state's COVID-19 response at the State Capitol in Baton Rouge, La., announcing that his stay-at-home directive will end with the Phase 1 reopening of the state on Friday, May 15. Dr. Alex Billioux, M.D., right, assistant secretary of health for the La. Dept. of Health's Office of Public Health, looks on.(Travis Spradling/The Advocate via AP)
Published: Jan. 21, 2021 at 8:02 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 22, 2021 at 3:54 PM CST
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BATON ROUGE, La. (KALB) - Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards held a news conference Friday, Jan. 22 on the state’s response to the continued rise in COVID-19 cases, deaths, and hospitalizations.

After a recent surge in the number of positive infections statewide, mostly attributed to holiday travel and celebrations, Governor Edwards says he is hopeful the state will continue to see trends decrease.

Governor Edwards updates state's response to COVID-19.

Posted by KALB News Channel 5 on Friday, January 22, 2021

Gov. Edwards announced the launch of COVID Defense, Louisiana’s exposure notification mobile application for Google and Android phones to slow the spread of COVID-19.

This comes after a more contagious strand of the virus has been identified in Louisiana.

The Governor says the U.K. variant can potentially place an even greater burden on the state’s already struggling healthcare system, since it is more contagious.

Another potential threat posed to Louisiana’s healthcare system is the number of COVID-19 vaccinations that are allocated to the state on a weekly basis.

The Governor has announced that the Louisiana Department of Health is rolling out a new dashboard that will report additional information on the number of vaccinations being administered statewide.

That new feature will display the number of vaccines being distributed according to region, gender, age and race.

The address comes two days after Gov. Edwards attended the inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris in Washington D.C.

Gov. Edwards discussed how he plans to work with the Biden administration on efforts to reduce the spread of the disease and ramp up the state’s distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.

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