FRANFORT, KY (WOWK) – Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear reported 15 new COVID-19 related deaths in the Bluegrass State today, icluding a 68-year-old man from Boyd County.
Federal coronavirus coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx was in Kentucky today, meeting with Gov. Beshear, Department for Public Health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack and Kentucky General Assembly leaders.
The Governor thanked Dr. Birx for the visit and for applauding the state’s proactive measures that helped to slow the spread of the virus. The Governor noted that Kentucky has fared better than many other states.
Dr. Stack said the pandemic’s third surge is rising more rapidly than seen in the previous surges. The current surge is also broader, involving more counties simultaneously. This surge is also lasting longer, nearly twice as long so far from initiation of rapid spread to plateau
Gov. Andy Beshear announced on Tuesday that seven more Kentucky hospitals received shipments of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines and that the administration of thousands of vaccines are beginning to occur.
“The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are absolute game changers with 94-95% effectiveness and, it appears, minimal side effects,” Gov. Beshear said. “It gives us a view and a vision and a certainty of victory against this virus. We’ve just got to stay vigilant between now and when everybody can get it.”
Facilities receiving vaccine deliveries late yesterday and today include Baptist Health in Corbin, Louisville and Madisonville; Norton Hospital in Louisville; UK HealthCare in Lexington; Pikeville Medical Center; and St. Elizabeth Healthcare, Edgewood.
As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 15, Gov. Beshear reported the following COVID-19 numbers:
- New cases today: 2,946
- New deaths today: 15
- Positivity rate: 8.53%
- Total deaths: 2,239
- Currently hospitalized: 1,788
- Currently in ICU: 438
- Currently on ventilator: 246
Top counties with the most positive cases today are: Jefferson, Fayette, Warren, Daviess and Madison. Each of these counties reported 100 or more new cases; Jefferson County alone reported 418.