Louisiana Department of Health Updates for 4/04/2020; Natchitoches at 15 Cases

April 04, 2020

Louisiana’s modeling data show the state on course to require 2,500 new hospitalizations a day in the New Orleans area by mid-May, if the public does not adhere to COVID-19 mitigation measures like Gov. Edwards’ Stay at Home order.

Governor Edwards and the Louisiana Department of Health on Friday shared a product of the state’s COVID-19 modeling that takes into account the Governor’s aggressive mitigation measures.

“There are increasing efforts across the country to understand the impact of social distancing, school closures, stay at home orders and other mitigation measures as we strive to flatten the curve and slow the spread of this virus,” said Governor John Bel Edwards. “What we are seeing is that many Louisianans are taking this seriously. Unfortunately, there are still others who are not, and perhaps it is because we have not fully impressed upon all of our citizens the serious consequences of not staying at home.”

Projections are based on modeling that accounts for the rate of hospitalization and death, as well as the capacity of health care facilities and medical surge efforts in each region. Each scenario is based on the number of new people a COVID-19 positive patient infects. In the most favorable scenario, this number is lower, with fewer people being infected and fewer health care resources needed.

Louisiana releases data about hospitalized cases and hospital and ventilator use each day on its COVD-19 dashboard at ldh.la.gov/coronavirus

The product of the Department’s COVID-19 model shows differing scenarios based on how well the public participates in different mitigation efforts. This graph shows projected new hospitalizations per day under four different scenarios in Region 1 (the Greater New Orleans Area). As the Department builds out additional regional projections, it will share them with the public.

Louisiana Department of Health Updates for 4/02/2020

April 02, 2020

The Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) on Thursday reports 2,726 additional COVID-19 cases, bringing the state’s total to 9,150 cases. More than 95% of these positive results are from tests conducted in commercial labs.

“While extremely upsetting, this increase in COVID-19 cases appears to be less a sign of new exponential growth and more a sign of a logjam from commercial labs,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards. “I am pleased to see a ramp up in testing across the state. We need this energy and commitment to continue. It’s important to understand that what’s happening in Louisiana with the increased testing is also happening around the country. That said, as more and more commercial labs come online our different data systems must learn to talk to one another.

“I have said time and again – COVID-19 is a statewide problem and testing is a vital step towards understanding the scale of this problem. We believe COVID-19 is spreading in every parish in Louisiana.”

“If there is a place to draw hope here it is that these new data reveal our COVID-19 related hospitalization and death rates, while still concerningly high, are trending more in line with the national average,” said Dr. Alex Billioux, assistant secretary of the Office of Public Health.

“The situation remains concerning, but every Louisianan has the power to change the path we are on,” said Gov. Edwards. “Think of your neighbors, and please stay at home.”

You is Wasteful

By Reba Phelps

Some years ago before my youngest daughter grew into the sophisticated young lady that she is today, she was very much a terror. She wasn’t a quiet child who could easily blend into her surroundings. She wasn’t a child who would occupy herself and play with a bag of toys while adults mingled or the preacher preached. She was very high maintenance and I just remember constantly apologizing for her behavior.

My friends that were closest to me affectionately called her, “wild-Kat”. I am eternally grateful these uncertain days are behind us now.

But, during the midst of her reign-of-terror we went to visit a close friend of mine who lives on Cane River. It was Easter Sunday and my friend had numerous nieces and nephews around her age, so it was a welcoming environment for rowdy children. It was a perfectly sunny day and the children were having heaps of fun. They played Easter themed games with eggs and even went fishing on the banks of the Cane.

It was picture perfect.

As the evening came to a close everyone headed inside for a supper of Creole Easter lunch leftovers. Once inside we noticed that my friend’s Maw Maw Genie had baked a beautiful, old-school single layer jelly cake. She was just finishing the jelly application when my terror was standing in line begging for a piece. The gracious and well meaning grandmother let her cut her own piece.

I knew deep in my heart this would not end well for anyone involved. I tried to intervene before she took possession of the knife. My Kat-like reflexes failed me and she had hacked into the cake before I, or my friend, could stop her.

Needless to say, she cut a piece of cake large enough to feed herself, my friend, me and any other adult in that kitchen. As speechless and mortified that I was, I did not even have to react. Kat had met her match in Maw Maw Genie. She let her know quick that it was rude and she better be prepared to eat every single bite. My friend and I knew she wouldn’t be able to eat all of it so we stood by, ready to eat a share of if to prevent a good old fashioned kitchen whooping.

It was a complete Creole standoff as Maw Maw Genie watched every bite that Kat took. As soon as it was all over and we were breathing a sigh of relief, the grandmother looked at wild-Kat right square in the eye and said, “You is wasteful,” with a stern voice that made all of us stand at attention.

She was the worst kind of wasteful that day. She probably wasn’t even hungry and still took the cake. I have reminded my daughter of that story every single time she even has the appearance of being wasteful. Being wasteful has a much deeper sentiment than that funny story in our household these days.

If there is one thing that the COVID-19 pandemic, shelter in place, has taught me and my girls, is that we were living extremely wasteful lives. We didn’t limit our wastefulness just to food. We were wasteful of our time together. We totally took it for granted as if we had an endless supply. We were wasteful with our talents and we filled our lives with meaningless things that kept us away from each other and kept us from praying together as a family. It was a rarity that we all sat together at the same time and talked about nothing for hours on end. We have sincerely used this slower pace to reflect on our blessings and take inventory of the things that matter most. We have used this time to pray for our nation, our community and our family members.

Maybe Maw Maw Genie tried to teach us this years ago with her stern but truthful words. We was wasteful. In every sense of the word.

“Show me, Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath even those who seem secure.” – Psalm 39:4-5

Rest in peace Orena Genevieve Beaudion Christophe – 1930-2020

Engage continues serving community during Covid-19

In response to the Governor of Louisiana’s Stay at Home Order, Engage Federal Credit Union will remain open for business. Financial Institutions are considered an essential business to the community and will continue to be here to serve you. The safety of our staff members, their families, and the members we serve is very important to us. We will continue to follow all safety rules put in place and do our part to help stop the spread of the virus.

We have received feedback from our members, and we know there are real concerns about fraud attempts related to the COVID-19. The job of a fraudster is to deceive others and take advantage for personal gain. They are opportunistic; they will find anything to take advantage of including fear, anxiety and the unknown surrounding coronavirus. They come in many forms; phone, text, emails, websites, and even mail or faxes.

Email and phone scams have been reported where scammers are phishing for personal information by impersonating health officials. Reports of requests for donations to help fund emergency plans have also been seen. Emails are also spreading false information that the virus is in the emailer’s area and they need to click on the link and enter personal information to read more. Below you will find a partial list of known scams:

Treatment scams- Scammers offer to sell fake cures, vaccines and advice on unproven treatments for COVID-19.

Supply scams- Scammers create fake shops, websites, social media accounts and email addresses claiming to sell medical supplies currently in high demand, such as surgical masks.

Provider scams- Scammers contact people by phone and email, pretending to be doctors and hospitals that have treated a friend or a relative for COVID-19 and demand payment for treatment.

Charity scams- Scammers are soliciting donations for individuals, groups and area affected by the virus.

Phishing scams- Scammers posing as national and global health authorities, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), send phishing emails designed to trick recipients into downloading malware or providing personal identifying and financial information.

App scams- Scammers create and manipulate mobile apps designed to track to spread of COVID-19 to insert malware that will compromise user devices and personal information.

We encourage you to manage your money from home, and we offer a full range of banking solutions that are available 24/7. For members not signed up for digital banking, please contact us at 318-238-7762. To apply for a loan from the comfort of your home please visit our website at http://www.engagefcu.org.

We understand this is a difficult time for everyone but be assured that Engage FCU will be here for your continued service. We sincerely hope this situation will pass quickly, but until that time your safety and the safety of our staff will be our top priority.

LDWF ALERT: Be Aware Of Fake Hunting and Fishing Announcements

Recently, LDWF has had to respond to several fake news articles, one regarding increased fishing fines and, most recently, the supposed forced closure of hunting and fishing season because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

None of it is true.

Any valid information regarding LDWF actions is on our website at www.wlf.la.gov,  Please verify the accuracy of any information at these sites before sharing it on social media.

“It is incredibly unfortunate that some individuals would go out of their way to spread false information with the intent of creating confusion for the wonderful people of Louisiana,” said LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet. “At a time when we are pulling together to deal with a deadly health crisis, there are some who find such actions amusing.”

LDWF supports the recent comments by Gov. John Bel Edwards encouraging people “to go outside and to stay active during this time, as long as they practice social distancing when they are around their neighbors.”

It is essential to remember that people should not gather in groups of more than 10, that you practice social distancing – stay at least six feet apart – and that you strictly follow the state and local orders related to the pandemic.

We hope your families are well during these challenging days and have the opportunity to spend time outdoors together – whether relaxing in your backyard, biking in your neighborhood, hiking a nature trail, taking advantage of our upcoming turkey season, or going fishing near your home.

As always, you’ll need a valid fishing or hunting license and must follow all fish and game regulations for the state of Louisiana.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. 

Notice of Death – April 2, 2020

Please note that the State Law limits number of people during the visitation period and attendance at the service to ten (10) or less and that social distancing be observed! This must be strictly enforced! Thank you in advance for your cooperation. It is designed for the safety of the family, our staff and the general public.

Rodney Richard
April 1, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Mary Isaac
March 31, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Lula B. Scott
March 26, 2020
Visitation: Saturday, April 4 from 9:30-11 am at the First Baptist Church, located at 1116 Amulet Street in Natchitoches
Service: Saturday, April 4 at 11 am at the First Baptist Church with limited attendance
Interment: Lawrence Serenity Sanctum

Florida Mae Brown
September 2, 1944 – March 19, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Hilton T Lytle
November 19, 1922 – March 21, 2020
Service held March 24

Ivory Butler
July 30, 1958 – March 19, 2020
Service: Friday, April 3 at 11 am at New Zion Baptist Church in Winnfield

Lois Ryals Merrill
October 22, 1924 – March 30, 2020
Service held April 2

Natchitoches Parish: COVID19 Notice to comply and avoid curfew


NATCHITOCHES – The City of Natchitoches would like to notify the public of several resources on a local and state level to stay up to date with the developments surrounding COVID-19 or if the public has any questions/concern during these unprecedented times.


The Natchitoches Regional Medical Center is currently monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic on a state, but more importantly local level by posting daily updates to their website (https://www.nrmchospital.org/covid-19-update/) and facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/nrmchospital/). Individuals with symptoms or concerns are advised to first contact their primary care provider. If they do not have a primary care provider then call NRMC at (318) 214-4267 for evaluation.


To prevent the spread of infection, the Louisiana Department of Health is heavily engaged in priority public health actions. These actions include, but are not limited to:

• working with healthcare facilities with presumptive patients to identify exposed healthcare workers and make appropriate recommendations;
• ensuring all recommended infection control precautions are implemented in the healthcare facilities until we determine that the patient is no longer infectious,
• notifying and monitoring close contacts;
• coordinating with CDC

The LDH is proactively addressing COVID-19 in the State of Louisiana and is providing the public with daily updates as they develop. Updates in the number of positive cases, test completed, and deaths reported are posted on the LDH website (http://ldh.la.gov/Coronavirus/) twice daily at 9:00 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.


The Louisiana Region 7 Hospital Preparedness Coalition has provided the City of Natchitoches with information regarding COVID-19 Testing and Evaluation.


The Keep Calm Through COVID crisis phone line provides trained, compassionate counselors to support Louisianans through this difficult time. Counselors are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week with information and service coordination, linking callers to mental health and substance abuse counseling services. This service is available to the public at no charge. Call the Keep Calm Through COVID hotline at 1-866-310-7977 at any time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All calls are confidential. This line is for counseling only, and people calling for general information should call 211.


United Way of Northwest Louisiana fights for health, education, financial stability and essential needs. While the long-term effects of the COVID-19 crisis are not yet known, United Way continues to offer services in real-time to our community. Now, more than ever, these programs are a lifeline to those in need. If you need assistance finding food, paying housing bills, accessing free childcare, or other essential services, dial 211 to speak to someone who can help. Specialists are available 24/7 to help you access the best local resources and services to address any need.
As more information becomes available on resources in our area, we will release those to the public.

If you, your business or a member of your non-profit organization would like to appear on The Magnolia Minute, then contact us at the email or number below!

The Magnolia Minute
Natchitoches Parish Journal
318-354-4000 #6

Natchitoches Parish: COVID-19 Testing TODAY

Testing and screenings will be available from 10 am – 12 pm TODAY in the parking lot of Central Louisiana Technical College (CLTCC) at 6587 Highway 1 in Natchitoches.

If you think you may be experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 also known as the Coronavirus, please stop by. Remain in your car as you receive screening. If after the screening, the professionals recommend testing, the NRMC Associates will do so at a testing station as part of the drive through process and test results will be available in approximately 4 days.

All participants must bring a valid photo ID and their insurance card. All insurances including Medicaid, Medicare, and commercial insurance are accepted.

Louisiana Department of Health Updates for 4/01/2020

April 01, 2020

The Louisiana Department of Health has updated its website to reflect the latest number of positives and will continue to update its website at noon each day.

As of noon on April 1, the Department reported 1,187 additional cases since yesterday, bringing the total to 6,424 positive cases. This is approximately a 23-percent increase since yesterday.

A total of 1,498 COVID-19 patients are currently hospitalized; of those, 490 patients require ventilation.

The Department reports an additional 34 deaths since yesterday, bringing the total to 273 deaths. Deaths are listed on the LDH dashboard by parish under the by parish tab and information by age can be found on the by age group tab.

Long-term care facilities
The Department of Health has identified COVID-19 clusters in 47 long-term care facilities in the state. For context, there are a total of 436 nursing homes and adult residential care facilities in Louisiana.

Because of the sheer volume of cases, we will be sharing the updated number of clusters every day at noon. We will rely on facilities for reporting on the most up-to-date information. The Department continues to work with facilities to minimize the spread of the illness and protect residents and staff.


Hours to change for court offices, Clerk of Court

The Tenth Judicial District Court, Hon. Lala B. Sylvester, Chief Judge, signed an amended order concerning court operations under the exigent circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic:

The limited office hours of 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. is now extended to Wednesday, April 30, 2020, for all court offices and the Clerk of Court’s Office;

Access to judges’ offices and/or chambers are now by appointment only by calling Division A (Hon. Desiree Duhon Dyess) at 318.357.2210; or Division B (Hon. Lala B. Sylvester) at 318.357.2209;

Clerk of Court encourages making an appointment before arriving at Clerk’s Office by calling 318.352.8152;

Clerk of Court encourages filings by fax, mail, or commercial courier and not in-person filings; and

Grand Juries remain as scheduled until further order.

Updates regarding court operations under the pandemic can be found on the court website (www.10jdc.com) or its Facebook page (10th Judicial District Court of Louisiana), the Natchitoches Bar Association Facebook page, or the Clerk of Court’s website (www.npclerkofcourt.org).

See attached order


By Judy McIntyre

So my unbusy lifestyle continues and the lake critters continue to teach me new things on a daily basis. A few days ago I had a number of visitors in the cove. Thank goodness they were not human visitors, as I am still not used to exactly how to handle social distancing! It seems so awkward. My visitors wore feathery white wings, and there was a host of them on the shoreline. No, they were not angels, they were Great White Egrets. 17 Great Whites to be exact! I do not normally have 17 Great Whites in the cove. I usually have only 2, and they are joined by a Blue Heron who is very bossy and very vocal. The rest of the neighborhood is comprised of a nesting pair of wood ducks, and a community of happy purple martins who stay busy all day clearing the air of mosquitoes. The Eagle glides overhead on a daily basis but chooses to land in the top of my neighbor’s oak tree rather than mine. In the yard I am blessed with hundreds of little songbirds, a Great Horned Owl, a variety of woodpeckers, doves, brown thrushes, and migratory birds who are only stopping over. The hummingbirds are just arriving even though once again we have gone from warm to cool weather.

So back to the question of WHY do I suddenly have 17 Great White Egrets in my cove. It happens every spring. The first time I saw it, I couldn’t believe it. Egrets are very territorial which means they don’t behave well with others! What I see every spring gives me hope that if birds can learn to cooperate and follow directions, maybe there is hope for the human race. The 17 egrets were spaced out along the shoreline of the cove and the point off my neighbor’s property with exact spacing! There was exactly 6 feet of space between each pair of birds. This does not happen in the summer or fall or winter-just in the spring. The line of birds stretched about 100 feet. I researched Egrets and discovered no information on this strange behavior. So I will tell you my guess. This time of year, the crappie (white perch, or sac au lait) are making their run to the bank to spawn. As the crappie come in, the minnows are driven into the shallows. The Great Whites have sent out a message to gather for the annual spring feast. Please note that they have not invited the Blue Heron. I have noticed that they prefer to watch from the shore for a minnow to swim by and then spear it with their beak. They like to keep their feet dry although there are times when I see them wading as well. Every spring I marvel at their gathering and their exact spacing. This year I may have to amend my guess and just say that the Egrets got the message from Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx, and they are practicing social distancing to insure that none of them get the Corona Virus.

President Trump and Vice President Pence, you should be pleased that something, somewhere is listening and practicing social distancing. I just wonder how birds understand distance and know what 6 feet looks like. Surely, we are smarter than they are! Come on, everybody, if the Great White Egrets can do it, we can, too!