BATON ROUGE, La (KTAL/KMSS) – The Louisiana Department of Health reported 9,378 new cases and 5 new deaths on Wednesday, bringing the total number of cases to 816,228 and the total number of deaths to 14,983.

That’s nearly twice as many cases as were confirmed over the previous 24 hours, and the LDH says 88.5% of the cases across the state are the omicron variant.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates the proportion of Omicron in HHS Region 6 (which includes Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas) is 86.7%. Furthermore, 95% of parishes are at the 2 highest levels of community transmission,” the state health department said in a statement released Wednesday afternoon.”

According to LDH, 659 people are currently hospitalized, up by 145 since Tuesday. Of those, 28 are on ventilators. According to the state health department, 77 percent of those currently hospitalized with COVID-19 are unvaccinated.

Since Tuesday, six more people have died. The LDH says 98 percent of the new cases are tied to community spread.

The number of new cases reported Wednesday in Northwest Louisiana also doubled over the number reported on Tuesday. Of the 1,327 new cases reported in NWLA Wednesday, more than half (660) are in Caddo Parish. Bossier Parish reported another 252 new COVID-19 cases.

Hospitalizations in Region 7 also rose by another 21 to a total of 99 patients in Northwest Louisiana hospitals due to COVID-19.

According to the latest data from the LDH, all nine Northwest Louisiana parishes in Region 7 are at High Community Risk for transmission of the coronavirus. The CDC measures community risk by calculating the total number of new cases per 100,000 persons in the past seven days.

The CDC recommends everyone wear a mask in public, indoor settings in communities with high or substantial transmission.

If you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms, LDH urges you to get tested. Find the nearest testing site here.