Gov. Jon Bel Edwards said that the state of Louisiana now has the third-highest number of COVID-19 cases in the United States amid the recent surge in the state’s overall coronavirus cases, warning that the state’s healthcare system could be overburdened by early April.

"We remain on a trajectory, really to overwhelm our capacity to deliver health care by the end of the first week of April,” Edward said on ABC’s 'This Week' Sunday.

During a private teleconference held with the governors last week, Edwards raised similar concerns wherein he said that the state’s hospital capacity could soon be overwhelmed by the increasing COVID-19 cases. The Louisiana governor also asked President Donald Trump for federal resources, as the state, along with having staffing difficulties, is in desperate need of ventilators.

"We've had orders in for more than 12,000 ventilators, some through the national stockpile and others through private vendors. Thus far -- over the last several weeks -- we've been able to get only 192,” Edwards said.

In recent times, healthcare providers across the nation have warned of a shortage of essential equipment for doctors and patients alike. On Sunday, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said that he had a word with the White House Saturday night regarding the increasing need for ventilators.

"We had a very specific conversation with the White House last night about ventilators. That’s our number one ask. It’s our number one need. And that’s the one that we are focused most on right now. We have a long way to go on the whole PPE front but we’ve made more progress in other areas than we have right now on ventilators,” he said in an interview.

The state of Louisiana has reported a staggering number of 137 confirmed deaths, which is the second-highest death count per capita in the country. The state currently has 3,300 cases, out of the total COVID-19 cases across the country.

On Sunday, President Trump was forced to extend the social distancing guidelines from April 15 to April 30 as the number of confirmed cases in the country continued to skyrocket. As of Sunday night, the U.S. led the world in the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases with 140,960 positive cases and 2,457 deaths.

John Bel Edwards Democrat
John Bel Edwards, a pro-gun, anti-abortion Democrat, will replace Republican Bobby Jindal in the Louisiana governor's mansion. Reuters/Lee Celano