With COVID-19 cases again on the uptick across the Commonwealth, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear held a press conference Monday to discuss the COVID-19 delta variant, making strong recommendations to Kentuckians in terms of masking in public. Beshear’s recommendations are listed below.
- All unvaccinated Kentuckians should wear masks indoors when not in their home.
- Kentuckians who are at higher risk due to pre-existing conditions should wear masks indoors when not in their home.
- Vaccinated Kentuckians in jobs with significant public exposure should consider wearing a mask at work.
- All unvaccinated Kentuckians, when eligible, should be vaccinated immediately.
“The delta variant is a serious and, in some cases, even a deadly threat to non-vaccinated Kentuckians,” Beshear said. “We are even seeing more cases among vaccinated Kentuckians because of the delta variant.”
The governor repeatedly encouraged Kentuckians to get vaccinated, saying that 32,631 Kentuckians received vaccines in the past week, which Beshear said was significantly more than the week prior.
But Beshear especially encouraged Kentuckians especially aged 12-49 to get vaccinated, showing a chart that illustrated the percentages of Kentuckians vaccinated by age group. The 40-49 age group was only 51 percent vaccinated, followed by 46 percent for the 30-39 age group, and only 36 percent among those between the ages of 18-29. Numbers were not available for ages 12-17. Overall vaccination rate of all Kentuckians is 61 percent for those aged 18 and over.
Beshear also pointed out the fact that Kentucky has now had three straight weeks of increasing cases and the rate at which those cases are increasing on a weekly basis is also increasing.
“We’re seeing significant growth week to week, and we’re seeing the same in our positivity rate,” Beshear said. “Today, we’re at about 5.4 percent on the positivity rate.”
Beshear said that Kentucky’s number of hospitalizations was also increasing, but not seeing at the same rate of new cases and positivity rate. The number of deaths due to COVID-19 among Kentuckians and the number of ICU admissions was also not as drastic, according to the governor.
“But those numbers follow the cases,” Beshear said. “And this is entirely avoidable if you just go get vaccinated.”