Beshear Reports Declining Positivity Rate Despite Uptick In Cases
During Governor Andy Beshear’s daily COVID-19 briefing he reported that although the state’s number of cases is increasing, the positivity rate is declining. There were 726 newly reported cases of COVID-19 on Thursday. The positivity rate has fallen to 5.18%.
The total number of recorded cases in Kentucky to date is now 41,626. Beshear announced 14 new COVID-19 related deaths Thursday. He reported a total of 38 COVID-19 related deaths for August 18 - 20.
“We have to understand that this is not just real. It takes lives from us,” Beshear said. “It means even with a smaller mortality rate, even with us doing better, that we're going to lose more Kentuckians, it's basic arithmetic. So let's make sure that we make the right decisions to keep our cases low. Let's make sure that we wear our mask.”
There are currently 638 Kentuckians in the hospital with COVID-19. There are 155 in the intensive care unit, 108 of whom are on a ventilator. The state has conducted at least 794,282 tests.
“I certainly hope contact tracers are working really hard right now and that we learned very quickly that these folks were positive. Otherwise, it's going to present a heck of a challenge on Monday at a time when this virus is so hot,” Beshear said. “The good news, we are still seeing a lot of people willing to show up and be tested. That's really important. It's really important because it gives us better data on decisions we make. But more than that, it helps us find out when somebody is asymptomatic.”
Secretary of the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Eric Friedlander reported a 200% increase for “Meals on Wheels,” a meal delivery program for elderly or housebound individuals.
“This helps them with one meal a day. This helps them know that we care about them,” Friedlander said. “In our smaller counties this has been true more than anyplace else, of people stepping up and volunteering, restaurants, grocery stores, meatpacking plants, providing additional meals, providing additional help for our seniors.”
Individuals 60 or older, in need of meals can reach out to the state’s Aging and Disability Resource Center. The number is (877) 925-0037. Friedlander said the program is currently looking for volunteers to deliver meals.
Friedlander encouraged Kentuckians to partake in the 2020 census. He said the completion rate for the state is approximately 66%.
“This is how we make sure that we have funding for our roads and our teachers and our healthcare. It's how we make sure we have enough funding for our Meals On Wheels,” Friedlander said. “So please, this is one of the duties as a US citizen, as a Kentucky citizen.”