Beshear calls new daily record of coronavirus cases ‘staggeringly high’ as he defends new rules and asks churches to go remote
Dept. for Public Health map, relabeled by Ky. Health News; for a larger version, click on it.
Kentucky Health News
|John K. Carter|
Beshear received fresh pushback from Republicans, including Oldham County Attorney John K. Carter, who said on Facebook that his office would not prosecute anyone charged with violating the home-gathering order and added, “Have a happy Thanksgiving with as many of your family members as you want to celebrate this national holiday, as you desire.”
“It is different going into a restaurant, taking off your mask and eating while congregating around other people than going to Walmart to buy toilet paper and wearing your mask,” he said. “It’s entirely different. It’s different to have 10 people over to your house, where people are going to relax and take their masks off, than if you are at a venue that has people working there that are constantly reminding you to keep your mask on.”
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said public-health officials around the country are telling him they are seeing increasing numbers of infections from small gatherings. “Each family unit should do a risk-benefit determination about the holidays,” he said on CNN. “Maybe the prudent thing to do now is just pull it back and do it with the family unit you live in.”
|Alexa Rose Veit|
The governor highlighted the lost life of Alexa Rose Veit, a 15-year-old from Ballard Memorial High School, who died of covid-19 complications. He noted that while Alexa was born with Down syndrome, she never let that stop her from accomplishing whatever she set her mind to. He said Alexa was in remission from leukemia, but tested positive for the virus the week after Halloween.
“Those who knew Alexa asked we help raise awareness of how deadly this virus is and how important it is to follow the guidelines put in place,” said Beshear.
- Today’s deaths include a 93-year-old man from Boone County; a 75-year-old Breckinridge County man; a 73-year-old Calloway County woman; a 79-year-old Campbell County man; a 94-year-old woman and a 79-year-old man from Daviess County; two men, 67 and 77, from Fayette County; a 67-year-old man from Gallatin County; a 70-year-old Graves County woman; an 80-year-old Hopkins County woman; three women, 53, 69 and 96, and two men, 70 and 95, from Jefferson County; five women, 75, 86, 90, 95 and 96, and three men, 64, 77 and 96, from Kenton County; a 73-year-old woman and a 58-year-old man from Lee County; a 69-year-old McCracken County woman; two women, 92 and 96, from Monroe County; and an 89-year-old Rockcastle County woman.
- Counties with 10 or more cases were Jefferson, 724; Kenton, 179; Fayette, 178; Boone, 165; Warren, 115; Hardin, 108; Campbell, 104; McCracken, 90; Lee, 69; Bullitt, 64; Graves, 63; Madison, 62; Nelson, 59; Daviess, 56; Calloway, 51; Pulaski, 43; Pike, 41; Hopkins and Shelby, 39 each; Oldham, 38; Clay and Laurel, 37 each; Marion, 34; Woodford, 33; Barren, Christian, Montgomery and Muhlenberg, 31 each; Floyd, 30; Scott and Taylor, 29 each; Boyd, 28; Greenup, 27; Boyle, Henderson, Jessamine and Whitley, 26 each; Logan, Mercer and Rowan, 24 each; Meade, 22; Adair, 21; Washington, 20; Marshall, 19; Clark, Johnson, Lincoln, Mason and Perry, 18 each; Anderson, Casey, Grant, Grayson, Harrison and Webster, 17 each; Bell, Carter and Harlan, 16 each; Bourbon, Edmonson, Franklin, Hart and LaRue, 15 each; Lawrence and Russell, 14 each; Knox, Pendleton and Spencer, 13 each; Garrard, Morgan and Ohio, 12 each; Livingston, Owsley and Powell, 11 each; and Martin, Monroe and Wayne, 10 each.
- Beshear said 437 of today’s new cases were 18 and younger.
- In long-term care, 1,656 residents and 1,077 staff have active cases, with 130 new resident and 104 new staff cases reported today. There have been 1,119 covid-related resident deaths and six covid-related staff deaths, with 17 new resident deaths confirmed today.
- The college and university report shows 716 students and eight staff have tested positive for the virus in the past 14 days, with 78 students reported today.
- Beshear said another veteran from the Thomson-Hood Veteran Center in Wilmore died of covid-19, bringing its total covid-related deaths to 26. He said the center has gone six days without any new cases and that the state’s other three veteran centers had no positive cases.
- The governor said that over the last two weeks, about 1,359 health care workers have tested positive for the virus and that 8,300 have since the first Kentucky case was found in March.
- Beshear encouraged Kentuckians to donate blood, noting that it is safe to do so. For more information visit RedCross.org/giveblood or KYBloodCenter.org. On Nov. 10, the Kentucky Blood Center told the Herald-Leader that for several weeks, it has had less than a half-day’s supply available. Bill Reed, president and CEO of the center, said in a news release, “The ongoing effects of the pandemic have our blood supply at a critical level and our partner blood centers across the country are experiencing the same issues.”
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now recommends Americans avoid Thanksgiving travel altogether. The guidance says, “Travel may increase your chance of getting and spreading covid-19. Postponing travel and staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others this year.”
- The Herald-Leader explores why experts say getting a test before Thanksgiving with family isn’t enough. Health professionals continue to suggest only celebrating the holiday with members of your immediate household.
- Dr. Sarah Moyer, the head of the Louisville health department, pointed out places where infected people were reported visiting the two days before they noticed symptoms: “They were traveling, attending parties or gatherings, going to the grocery store, restaurants, schools, churches, workplaces, healthcare settings,” she said. “If we want to stop the spread of the virus, we really need to stop moving.”
|Slide from Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer’s Nov. 17 coronavirus briefing