Governor Beshear provides update on COVID-19 as cases continue to drop

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Today Governor Andy Beshear said COVID-19 numbers continue to decline. Although virus spread remains high statewide, several counties are no longer in the highest disease incidence category.

Beshear said if Kentucky’s COVID-19 numbers continue to decline, he plans to update the guidelines by March 14.

“The main line on COVID is that cases continue to drop at a good pace. Our positivity rate continues to drop. Hospitalizations, intensive care numbers and ventilator use are all down. Deaths still remain quite high, but we expect deaths to follow the rest of the trends shortly,” Governor Beshear said. “We are now below the peak of the delta variant. We are going in the right direction and at a good pace.

Information on COVID-19 cases, update on vaccinations

Number of people who received at least one dose of vaccine in Kentucky: 2,877,881
Number of people who received their booster shot in Kentucky: 1,069,243

February 19, Cas: 3,564
February 19, Death: 32
February 20, case: 1,422
February 20, death: 29

New cases today: 969
New deaths: 21
Positivity rate today: 12.74%
Current hospitalizations: 1,333
Current ICU admissions: 270
Currently on ventilators: 141

During the week ending Feb. 20, 25,173 cases were reported in Kentucky and the average test positivity rate was 13.10%. The percentage of positive PCR tests for COVID-19 continues to steadily decline. The number of patients currently hospitalized or in intensive care with COVID-19 is also steadily declining, however, large numbers of Kentuckians still remain hospitalized or in need of intensive care.

Severe thunderstorms

Kentucky will experience several rounds of heavy rain this week, with the first forecast beginning tonight and continuing through Tuesday and again Wednesday night through Friday. The heaviest precipitation is expected on Tuesday, with 1 to 3 inches or more of rain possible. A flood watch has been issued for the entire Commonwealth to highlight the potential for excessive rainfall and flooding during the day on Tuesday.

There is also a slight chance of severe weather in western and south-central Kentucky for Tuesday afternoon. A few strong storms are possible with heavy rain and damaging wind gusts as the most likely hazards, although an isolated tornado is possible.

Tornado death toll
To date, the Department of Public Health has confirmed that the death toll from the Western Kentucky tornadoes has risen to 80. Additional losses included a 33-year-old woman from Mayfield and her baby, who only lived only six days.

Commonwealth Accommodation Scheme

The Commonwealth has launched a new page for tornado survivors to help identify their needs.

Currently, travel trailers are still available for survivors to place on the property of affected families or on public property identified by state and local authorities. Thirty Kentucky families have benefited from the program so far.

To access this website, visit governor.ky.gov/TornadoResources. The page will connect survivors to global services from state and nonprofit organizations. It will also connect individuals to the Commonwealth Housing Scheme if they need medium-term accommodation during the recovery process. Once there, click on the registration link. Survivors will receive a confirmation email and/or response within approximately five business days.

To be eligible for continued accommodation, survivors must register with FEMA. The deadline for storm survivors to request FEMA assistance is Monday, March 14, 2022. To request FEMA assistance, visit DisasterAssistance.gov, use the FEMA mobile app, or call the Helpline. FEMA support at 800-621-3362. To find a disaster recovery center, go to fema.gov/drc or call the FEMA Helpline.

Federal government warning

The federal government has issued several warnings amid growing tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Companies across the United States have been encouraged to strengthen cyber defenses, especially those managing critical infrastructure like power and water. Concerns were also expressed about rising corn and wheat prices, as well as energy prices. The Biden administration is ready to deploy various tools to help relieve the gas pump. The governor stressed that Americans must be united during this difficult time.

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