Beshear announces 1,003 new COVID-19 cases, lowest since December

In his Monday press release, Beshear announced the state’s positivity rate is the lowest since Nov. 10 and the state has had four straight weeks of declining test positivity and weekly cases.

Governor Andy Beshear announced in a Monday press briefing 1,003 new cases of COVID-19, the lowest number reported since Dec. 26.

Beshear also announced that Kentucky’s positivity rate is 7.78%, the lowest since Nov. 10.

“The trends are all moving in the right direction, but that only happens from your hard work. We must keep this up because we do not want to lose this progress,” Beshear said.

Beshear said 1,163 Kentuckians are hospitalized, 274 are in intensive care, and 142 are on ventilators.

The number of Red Zones, Kentucky hospital regions with dangerously low ICU capacities, have fallen from four to two. Region 4, which includes Warren and surrounding counties, is no longer considered red after ICU capacity fell below 80% to 75.9%.

Beshear also announced 40 new deaths, bringing the overall state death toll to 4,091.

Kentucky has received 490,975 COVID-19 initial vaccine doses, 444,930 of which have already been distributed.

“One thing to note when you look at the vaccine demographic data: we have more individuals in long-term care under 70 than I had ever imagined,” Beshear said. “With that said, we need to continue to prioritize those 70 and older.

Beshear said that more men have been vaccinated been women, but this likely “reflects the health care and education sectors that have been in earlier phases.”

Beshear also pointed to a low minority vaccination rate, pointing to a hesitancy among minority groups to receive the vaccine.

“Black and African American Kentuckians, to date, have received about 4.3% of vaccinations where we know the person’s race. That is unacceptable,” Beshear said. “It needs to be closer to 8%, at least. About 1.1% of vaccines where ethnicity is known have gone to our Hispanic population, also too low.”

Of the total number of initial vaccines allocated to the state, 91% have already been distributed.

You can read the state report here.

Digital News Editor Michael J. Collins can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @MJCollinsNews.