Governor: Kentucky resumes COVID-19 surge preparations

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) Gov. Andy Beshear says the state has started preparations to expand hospital capacity as it struggles to overcome another surge in the coronavirus outbreak.

Beshear reported 1,312 new virus cases Tuesday. He says it’s the fourth-highest one-day total since the pandemic began and the highest number on any Tuesday. The state also reported 16 more virus-related deaths.

“Today’s report is grim. It is grim because it shows that we are not just continuing in our third escalation, but this one is probably now the second most worrisome escalation we have seen surpassed only by that original March increase,” said Gov. Beshear.

With hospitalizations rising, Beshear says the state is again making “surge preparations,” which includes possible hotel options as well as the use of state parks. Plans are also in place to stand up a field hospital, if necessary.

Beshear says he’s “pleading” with Kentuckians to wear masks in public and follow other health guidelines. He says other people’s lives, the economy and the education of children depend on it.

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(This story was originally published on October 20, 2020)

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