Ky. has top 2 days of coronavirus cases, positivity rate 11.9%; Beshear blames holiday gatherings, says ‘Wear your masks’

New York Times map, adapted by Kentucky Health News; for a larger version, click on it.

By Melissa Patrick

Kentucky Health News
After reporting the highest number of new coronavirus cases Wednesday, Gov. Andy Beshear reported the second highest number of cases Thursday: 4,911, for a total of 10,653 in just two days.

“We are in a dangerous place. It is now clear that we are seeing an escalation related to holiday gatherings,” Beshear said in a news release. “This is not the time to make it harder to react to this virus when it may be surging again. We have to have the tools to fight back.”

The seven-day rolling average, which smooths out daily fluctuations, is 3,172, about where it was Dec. 15. On that date, the three-day average, which Health Commissioner Steven Stack used at that time, was 2,401; today’s three-day average is 4,145.
Among the 10,653 cases, 1,321 of them are in Kentuckians 18 and under.
Behsear has been hesitant to blame the recent spike on holiday gatherings, but Thursday he squarely placed blame on them and made another plea for Kentuckians to follow the proven public-health measures that are known to slow the spread of the virus.
“Wear your masks all the time when you are indoors and there is anybody else there who is from outside your household,” said Beshear. “At this point, do it for your own safety. That’s what we need to do to get through these next couple months.”
The governor added that Kentucky has vaccinated 32,524 vaccinations over the past two days. “We are ready to defeat this virus and we need to make sure we protect our people while we do,” he said.
The share of Kentuckians testing positive for the virus also continues to escalate, reaching 11.9% on Thursday, the highest rate since the state started testing for the virus in May.
For the second day in a row, Beshear reported more than 30 deaths from Covid-19, announcing that 37 more Kentucky deaths were attributed to it Thursday, bringing the state’s toll to 2,843. Today’s number tied for the fourth largest daily total of Covid-19 deaths.
The state reports that 1,744 people are hospitalized with Covid-19 in Kentucky, with 424 in intensive care and 217 of those on a ventilator. All those numbers were down.
In other covid-19 news Thursday:
  • Thursday’s deaths were a Ballard County man, 85; four Christian County men, 66, 67, 79 and 89; a Clinton County man, 85; a Cumberland County man, 69; two Fayette County women, 60 and 88; two Fayette County men, 66 and 79; a Fleming County man, 67; a Green County man, 76; a Hardin County woman, 77; three Hopkins County women, 80, 95 and 96; two Hopkins County men, 88 and 96; two Jefferson County women, 78 and 97; a Jefferson County man, 78; a Lewis County man, 62; a Lincoln County woman, 89; a Livingston County man, 90; two McCracken County women, 39 and 63; three McCracken County men, 80, 94 and 80; a McCreary County man, 64; a Mercer County woman, 91; a Nelson County man, 88; a Rockcastle County man, 74; a Taylor County woman, 92; a Taylor County man, 85; and a Wayne County man, 65.
  • Counties with 10 or more new cases were: Jefferson, 683; Fayette, 266; Warren, 240; Kenton and Morgan, 194; Boone, 163; Hardin and Oldham, 112; Campbell, 107; Bullitt, 90; Madison, 87; Daviess, 85; Nelson, 76; Calloway and Christian, 72; Scott, 71; Laurel, 69; McCracken, 68; Pike, 61; Graves, 60; Hopkins, 59; Boyd, 56; Mercer, 53; Wayne, 52; Boyle and Whitley, 51; Marshall, 50; Rowan, 49; Barren, 48; Harlan, 46; Greenup, 45; Clark, 44; Franklin, Jessamine and Knox, 43; Floyd, 42; Muhlenberg, 39; Johnson, 37; Montgomery, 36; Pulaski, 35; Bourbon, 34; Lewis, 33; Bell, 31; Henderson, 29; Butler, Letcher and Shelby, 28; Breckinridge and Meade, 27; Harrison, 26; Clay and Logan, 25; Lincoln, Spencer and Woodford, 24; Cumberland, Hart and Simpson, 23; Allen, Ohio and Taylor, 21; Anderson, 20; Clinton and Grayson, 19; Jackson and Webster, 18; Todd, 17; Grant, Marion and Rockcastle, 16; Estill and Larue, 15; Carroll, McLean, Martin and Mason, 14; Lawrence, Leslie and McCreary, 13; Carter, Hancock, Nicholas and Trigg, 12; Garrard, 11; Adair, Edmonson, Perry and Washington, 10.
  • In long-term care, there are 93 new cases among staff and 80 new cases among residents, with 1,187 active resident cases and 757 active staff cases.
  • Despite criticism from the governor about the slow rollout of vaccines in Kentucky, Fayette County officials say they are giving the vaccines as quickly as possible, and there is no stockpile of vaccines in Lexington, reports Jeremy Chisenhall of the Lexington Herald-Leader. “There’s a misconception among the community that there’s a stockpile of vaccine coming in,” spokesman Kevin Hall said. “There’s not. Typically we find out on Monday how much vaccine we’re getting, so we’re planning these events as we go. . . . When we get the shipment on Monday, they’re into people’s arms on Wednesday. There’s no waste. We use every dose that we get.”
  • WKYT-TV offers an overview of tests are available for the coronavirus, who should get tested, where to find places to get tested, whether insurance will cover testing and more.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention‘s data tracker shows Kentucky ranks 17th for the percentage of coronavirus vaccines administered among those distributed to them, based on data updated Jan. 6, Becker’s Hospital Review reports. The report says the state has been sent 174,150 doses and has administered 67,673, or nearly 39%.
Previous Article
Next Article