Outbreak at prison, more than 1,300 new COVID cases: Beshear

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – A third straight day of more than 1,000 new coronavirus cases suggests the state’s surge is getting worse.

“Our COVID report today adds to a tough week,” said Andy Gov. Beshear. “We need to buckle down; we need to wear masks; we need to follow that rule of no gatherings above 10 people at our homes. We need to social distance and we shouldn’t play politics with this virus. It is real. It doesn’t matter if there’s an election a couple of weeks away.”

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The governor reported 1,319 new cases, raising the state total to 85,506. Of the new cases, 189 are from children up through age 18, of which 36 were children 5 and under. The youngest was only 7 days old.

One piece of good news in a report filled mostly with bad news — the positivity rate which climbed to almost 5 percent Thursday, fell back slightly to 4.7 percent.

Another piece of unfortunate news: the Little Sandy Correctional Complex has suffered an outbreak with 17 inmates and two staff testing positive.

“We will be testing the entire facility, and we will be using the protocols that we first used at Green River to successfully stop an outbreak that had occurred there,” Beshear said.

He also reported four new deaths, raising the total to 1,300 Kentuckians lost to the virus.

“My faith tells me I have to treat my neighbor as myself, and that means I have to protect my neighbor, whether I know them or not,” said Beshear. “My rights stop where they could be harmed. Let’s do the right thing and lets follow our values.”

The deaths include a 77-year-old woman from Adair County; a 51-year-old man from Bullitt County; and two women, ages 86 and 94, from Madison County.

He also shared that he, the First Lady and their children, Will and Lila, are all “still feeling great” after being exposed to a state trooper in their security detail who tested positive last weekend.

They continue to test negative for COVID-19 and have been keeping a positive attitude about their quarantine, “enjoying the extra time with each other and their dog, Winnie.”

“We are going to continue quarantining, as asked by the Department for Public Health, because that’s what everybody else is asked to do in this same situation,” said Beshear. “We want to set a good example.”

The member of the Governor’s security detail who tested positive for COVID-19 is still experiencing mild symptoms, but doing well.

For information, including up-to-date lists of positive cases and deaths, as well as breakdowns of coronavirus infections by county, race and ethnicity, click here. To see all recent daily reports, click here.

Information about COVID-19 and schools is also being made available. To view the reports, click here for K-12 and here for colleges and universities.