Louisiana's rising number of COVID-19 cases

Dr. Jennifer Avegno, director of the New Orleans Public Health Department, joins us with the latest developments out of Louisiana.
3:06 | 03/25/20

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Transcript for Louisiana's rising number of COVID-19 cases
As the number of coronavirus cases continue to rise around the country, there are certain areas with large numbers of cases of growing concern and now, Louisiana has more cases per capita than every other state except for New York and Washington. Governor John Bel Edwards receiving a major disaster declaration. Here is Dr. Jen avegno. New Orleans parish has the sixth highest rate of coronavirus, do you know why? Well, I think there's a lot of reasons. I don't know if we'll ever know why, because it's multifactorial. We're an urban area, we're not as dense as New York. Density of crowds spreads the disease. We're social people. We're out all the time. We have festivals and celebrations and we parades, we're more likely in February to be in close contact with one another than other places and we're also intergenerational, there's a lot of family connectedness here and finally, we have ramped up our testing significantly, so a lot of the increase that we're seeing is due to being able to perform a lot more tests in a short period of time compared to other states. Right, and we know that state and local governments have secured more than $65.6 million in costs related to coronavirus in Louisiana. What needs to happen next for Well, we're really encouraged by the president accepting our governor's request to declare a disaster as he's done in other states, that's going to help tremendously in getting those resources that we need. Like everywhere else, like new York City, like Los Angeles, like Seattle, like everywhere else in between, we need equipment -- we need ventilators, we need personal protective equipment. We need the things that every community in America is struggling to get. So we really appreciate having these extra resources. We have been on this, working this for weeks and weeks, but this is going to really benefit our healthcare workers and our community. Do you feel like that new Orleans has been a part of the national discussion, or have you been overlooked until today? Certainly you're making headlines today. You know, it's not being first or worst, it's about understanding the magnitude and advocating, you know, our congressional delegation certainly hasn't been quiet, they have been advocating for us since day one. This is not our first crisis, this is not our first disaster. We're battle-tested. We have great relationships with the governor's office, with the state and we've been working on this together, advocating, we knew what we were going to need and we started asking early. Whether we're getting media coverage of that or not, we've always been out front trying to get what we needed. You make a good point, New Orleans knows and the state of Louisiana knows how to rise up. Dr. Avegno, thank you for being with us. Thank you. Much more ahead on "What you

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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