Dr. Martha Whyte from the Louisiana Office of Public Health talks about the continuing rise of COVID numbers and how we may be seeing just the beginning of numbers worse than last summer and fall.

"Every day (last week) we broke a record for the number people in hospitals," says Whyte. "It's climbing from one day to the next."

Meanwhile, Willis Knighton Health System's Chief Administrative Officer, says that of 111 patients currently hospitalized at WK, 99 are unvaccinated. Crawford adds that Willis Knighton emergency rooms and quick care facilities across the area are see more seeing more than 300 COVID cases every day.

And Whyte says the growing numbers are putting an unsustainable strain on all area health care providers. "In this area, we're about 9% of the cases (statewide). We, luckily, aren't in quite as bad a situation as the hospitals down south, but it's coming."

Whyte adds that the number of new COVID cases is staggering, saying there were 16,210 new cases in Louisiana this weekend alone, with 60% of those being under the age of 40.

Here's the situation Dr. Whyte explained to KEEL:

The Doctor then explains why she thinks the worst may be yet to come. "Nobody's masking. We still have very mow vaccination rates. This extremely contagious Delta variant is going to put more and more people in the hospital.

"We are not going to vaccinate out of this surge. It takes too long to help us out. That's how we'll make it through the pandemic. What we have to do is wear a mask if we want to get through this surge. People are being stubborn and not wanting to do it.

"We don't want to be at the point of rationing care. If there's no machine to take care of you, then we have to decide who gets the machine."

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