Kentucky saw a record number of COVID-19 cases last week and the state is “more than on track” to exceed that figure this week, said Gov. Andy Beshear on Wednesday.
For the first time since March, cases topped 1,000 for each of the past two days, reaching 1,004 daily cases on Wednesday — a further sign cases are escalating in the state, Beshear said.
“1,004 cases is a problem and it means we need to be more vigilant,” he said. “We have to continue to be committed to doing the things that are going to stop that escalation.”
Among the new cases, 154 were among people under the age of 18.
At the same time, the positivity has gone down in recent days and is now at 4.07%. Beshear said that decrease can be misleading however, because overall cases can still grow at the same time the positivity rate shrinks, when testing is expanding.
Beshear also reported four new deaths bringing the total to 1,174 fatalities. He said increases in deaths often follow a couple weeks after spikes in cases.
If cases continue to escalate, Beshear said he would revisit statewide guidance, but as of now feels the guidance that is already in place for schools, long-term care facilities and other areas is sufficient.
As the state heads into fall, Beshear said there are reports fewer people are wearing masks in grocery stores.
He reminded residents to take the steps necessary to protect themselves and their families from exposure to the virus through wearing a mask, social distancing, washing hands and answering the phone when receiving a call from contact tracers.
Beshear said the state plans to issue guidance on Thursday for families interested in finding a “reasonably safe” way to trick-or-treat on Halloween, though he also said that not trick-or-treating this year would still be the safest way to limit the spread of the virus.