Beshear: Kentucky ranks 3rd in nation for highest new daily cases

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KY Gov. Andy Beshear

Gov. Beshear began his Team Kentucky update Thursday on a grim note. He said 60 of the state’s 96 hospitals are operating under critical staffing shortages.

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Gov. Andy Beshear on Monday said Kentucky currently ranks third in the nation for the highest number of new daily COVID-19 cases per capita, with a seven-day average of approximately 90 new cases reported per 100,000 people.

COVID-19 Case Information Update
Number of people who have received at least one vaccine dose in Kentucky: 2,618,081
Number of people who received at least one vaccine dose since Friday: 26,219

Sept. 11, Cases: 4,470
Sept. 11, Deaths: 18
Sept. 12, Cases: 3,111
Sept. 12, Deaths: 21

New Cases Today: 2,426
New Deaths: 29
Today’s Positivity Rate: 13.70%
Current Hospitalizations: 2,446
Current Intensive Care Admittances: 646
Currently on Ventilators: 411

The Governor said after receiving new census data, the state now will be able to report percentages of Kentuckians 12 and older and ages 12 to 17 who have been vaccinated; demographic information for more than 170,000 additional vaccinated Kentuckians; and the number of Kentuckians vaccinated, rather than the number of people vaccinated in Kentucky.

The Governor said he could now report that 59% of all Kentuckians, including those that are too young to be eligible, have gotten at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose; 69% of Kentuckians 12 or older, or 69% of all eligible Kentuckians, have gotten at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose; and 71% of Kentucky adults have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose.

COVID-19 Monoclonal Antibody Treatments
Dr. Steven Stack, commissioner of the Kentucky Department for Public Health, updated Kentuckians on the use and availability of monoclonal antibody treatments for COVID-19 patients. During the week ending Sept. 7, 2021, 3,642 treatment courses of monoclonal antibodies were used in Kentucky. As of Sept. 7, Kentucky hospitals have 9,363 monoclonal antibody treatment courses on hand.

Monoclonal antibody treatments are available at 139 locations across Kentucky.

“Monoclonal antibody administration in Kentucky has expanded dramatically,” said Dr. Stack. “In the last eight weeks, we have gone from about 204 monoclonal doses given in the beginning of July all the way up to 3,642 doses given through last Wednesday. That is an 18-fold increase in just eight weeks.”

Dr. Stack explained that monoclonal antibodies are synthetic, laboratory-created antibodies. They give patients a temporary immune boost, ideally helping people who are already sick have a milder disease. They do not teach a patient’s body how to create its own antibodies.

“Monoclonal antibodies are an important tool, but we have another alternative, vaccinations. Vaccines prime your immune system to create natural antibodies that your own body will produce to create a natural immune response that then can protect you for at least eight months or more,” said Dr. Stack. “It’s a lot easier to get vaccinated than to get monoclonal antibodies.”

K-12 School Testing Program
Dr. Stack also updated Kentuckians on the state’s school testing program, and said parents and school leaders can find more information here: https://govstatus.egov.com/K-12-kentucky-school-testing-program.

Kentucky National Guard Assisting Overwhelmed Hospitals
The Governor said the Kentucky National Guard is handling COVID-19 testing at some of the state’s most overwhelmed hospitals to assist with staff shortages.

Last week, he announced that along with the four hospitals that already have National Guard teams on the ground at their facilities, 21 more hospitals will receive assistance from an additional 310 soldiers and airmen.

They will assist with non-clinical functions within the hospitals for a maximum of two weeks. Ten to 30 members will be deployed to each facility in the next week. They are assisting with logistical and administrative support to allow hospital staff to focus on patients. To learn more, see the full release.

“There will now be 411 Kentucky National Guard members in 25 Kentucky hospitals helping to expand their capacity and ability to respond to this dangerous surge,” said Gov. Beshear. “Our Guard is stepping up yet again to help the commonwealth and our people. Thank you to you, your families, your employers and your community for you continued sacrifice and service.”

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