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Friday, January 8, 2021

Today: Third-highest numbers of cases reported; new NKY testing site announced

Gov. Beshear: More Than 15,000 COVID Cases Reported Over Past Three Days

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On Friday, Gov. Andy Beshear announced the third-highest ever report of new COVID-19 cases, surpassed only by the Jan. 7 and Jan. 6 reports.

Additionally Beshear announced a new COVID-19 testing site for Northern Kentucky. Created in partnership with U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the site will be at the Covington West IRS Parking Lot (302 W. 4th Street Parking Lot, Covington, KY 41011).

The site will be open Jan. 11 to Jan. 14 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Governor has reported 15,403 new COVID-19 cases in just three days.

“We are at a really tough point once again in our war against COVID-19. We have successfully stopped three waves of this virus, but we are now seeing a real and significant increase in cases and our positivity rate from people’s gatherings around the holidays,” said Gov. Beshear. “I wish it hadn’t happened. We’ve got to make sure that moving forward we are not gathering in that way, and we’ve got to know that we wear a mask now to protect ourselves.

“You need to be wearing a mask anywhere outside of your own household. It’s gotten that bad and these mutated versions appear to be spreading really fast.”

According to the most recent White House Federal Report for Kentucky, the state’s fall and winter surge has been at “nearly twice the rate of rise of cases as the spring and summer surges.”

The report continues: “The acceleration suggests there may be a United States COVID-19 variant that has evolved here, in addition to the United Kingdom variant that is already spreading in our communities and may be 50% more transmissible.

“Aggressive mitigation must be used to match a more aggressive virus: Without uniform implementation of effective face masking (two or three-ply and well-fitting) and strict social distancing, epidemics could quickly worsen as these variants spread and become predominant.”

The White House report recommends the creation of high throughput vaccination sites, continued active vaccination encouragement by the Governor, health officials and other community influencers and televised vaccinations, as Gov. Beshear and state officials conducted Dec. 22, in addition to four more group vaccinations where photos were shared with the media on Dec. 23, Dec. 28, Jan. 4 and another set on Jan. 4.  

Case Information 
As of 4 p.m. Friday, Jan. 8, Gov. Beshear reported the following COVID-19 numbers:

New cases today: 4,750
New deaths today: 13
Positivity rate: 11.9%
Total deaths: 2,856
Currently hospitalized: 1,748
Currently in ICU: 393
Currently on ventilator: 217

Kenton County: 171
Boone County: 111
Campbell County: 94

Vaccine Progress Update
The Governor said 107,799 initial vaccine doses have been administered across the state; 47,385 have been administered since Monday’s report, which Gov. Beshear said highlights the impact of the state’s push to dramatically speed up vaccinations in the commonwealth.

“A shot that sits in a freezer for an extended period of time is no use to anyone,” said Dr. Stack. “Because it is incredibly difficult to find everyone who meet very specific, discrete criteria, and because, unfortunately, there is a substantial portion of the population who is opting to wait for the vaccine or has some concern or hesitancy about it, at the end of the day, we want every vaccination administration site to give at least 90% of the vaccine that reaches the state within seven days, even if that means moving to people in a lower priority category who are willing and able to receive it.”

Long-Term Care Update
Today, Adam Mather, inspector general at the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, provided an update on vaccine progress in the commonwealth’s long-term care facilities.

As of yesterday, vaccinations had been given to staff and residents in 287 long-term care and assisted living facilities. Nearly 24,000 initial doses have been administered.

“There will be significant ramp-ups and a pledge by both partners to be finished administering initial doses by Jan. 25. Some delays in vaccinating residents have been related to COVID-19 outbreaks in facilities, but those residents will be able to be vaccinated at a later date. As the Governor mentioned, staff vaccinations remain a bit of an issue, but a caveat to that is that some of the facilities have decided to split their staff in half in case there are any reactions, so they can ensure they don’t have a staffing shortage.

“With that said, I want to point out that we haven’t seen any negative side effects from residents or staff reported other than soreness.”

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