Gov. Beshear reports single highest day of COVID-19 cases in Kentucky
FRANKFORT, Ky. - Gov. Andy Beshear gives an update on Kentucky’s fight against the coronavirus.
Gov. Beshear reported 1,346 new cases of the virus Wednesday, raising the total Kentuckians infected since the beginning of the outbreak to 83,013. One hundred and seventy-one of the newly reported cases were from children up to age 18, of which 34 were age 5 and under. The youngest was just 2 months old.
This was the most coronavirus cases reported in Kentucky in a single day that didn’t include a backlogged set of cases, as happened recently when some Fayette County case numbers were added.
“I’ve said this should be a wake-up call or maybe a jolt or shock to the system, but everybody ought to be concerned and everybody ought to be doing the right thing,” the Governor said. “Let’s push the complacency out and let’s get the urgency back in.”
Beshear reported 33 new cases in Warren County.
The Governor reported seven deaths, raising the death toll to 1,276.
The deaths reported Wednesday include a 76-year-old man from Boyd County; a 76-year-old man from Bullitt County; a 49-year-old woman from Fayette County; a 78-year-old man from Franklin County; an 82-year-old woman from Henderson County; a 76-year-old man from Jefferson County; and an 81-year-old man from Webster County.
The Governor also said two Kentucky veterans who were at the Thomson-Hood Veterans Center in Wilmore were among those who died from COVID-19.
“They were at the Lexington VA,” he said. “Those are now the second and third veterans in our nursing homes who we have lost. It’s another reason to make sure we’re doing everything we can to stop the spread of this virus.”
Dr. Steven Stack, KDPH commissioner, provided more detailed information Wednesday about the state of the coronavirus in the commonwealth and testing issues.
He encouraged residents to take advantage of more than 300 testing locations throughout the commonwealth, which can be found at kycovid19.ky.gov. Dr. Stack also highlighted new partnerships in some areas that need service.
“One of the central missions of public health is to try to help make sure underserved and disadvantaged individuals have access to health care just like everybody else,” Dr. Stack said.
The new testing sites include: Purchase District Health Department, serving McCracken, Ballard, Carlisle, Hickman and Fulton counties, at PurchaseHealth.org; Ashland-Boyd Health Department, serving Boyd, Greenup, Carter and Lawrence counties, at ABCHDKentucky.com; the Kentucky River Health Department, serving Lee, Wolfe and Owsley counties at KRDHD.org; and Lincoln Trail Health Department, serving Hardin, Meade, LaRue, Nelson, Marion, Washington, Breckinridge and Grayson counties at LTDHD.org.
Dr. Stack also reminded everyone that, beginning next week, Kentucky will change the way it calculates the positivity rate. Going forward, Kentucky will use COVID-19 PCR tests that are sent in electronically to make the calculation.
“PCR tests are the gold standard – those are the most reliable – for finding active disease in currently infected people,” Dr. Stack said.
Dr. Stack said there were four main benefits to moving to using the PCR tests to calculate the positivity rate: automated collection of data, a more stable data stream, filter for the past seven days and a quick turnaround on testing results.
Gov. Beshear emphasized that the change will not take place until next week to give everyone – hospitals, state officials, media and citizens – enough time to analyze and ask questions about the move before it happens.
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