By RYAN VAN VELZER
Kentucky reported 2,437 cases of COVID-19 and 14 new deaths on Saturday.
Cases are down from Thanksgiving’s record high of 3,870 cases, but testing also declined over the holiday. Kentucky is still in the midst of a rapid escalation.
Medical experts say the coming weeks are likely to be challenging as cases are expected to grow in the coming weeks as holiday gatherings translate into new transmissions.
To date, at least 1,885 Kentuckians have died of COVID-19 in Kentucky, another 1,722 are currently hospitalized with the virus and 220 of those are on a ventilator, according to a state report.
Public Health Commissioner Steven Stack said it’s important Kentuckians continue to be vigilant in following health guidelines. Wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing, limiting gatherings and washing hands are critical to curbing the spread of the virus.
“Don’t give in to mask fatigue. Wear your mask correctly. Vaccines are around the corner and may well be the weapon we need to defeat this illness; until then, every Kentuckian has to rise to this great challenge of our times to care for and protect each other,” Stack said.
Gov. Andy Beshear encouraged Kentuckians to shop safely for holiday gifts, purchasing online when possible to avoid crowded stores.
“Though we have to do it differently, please support our small businesses this weekend and holiday season,” he said.
It’s been more than a week since Beshear issued new restrictions closing bars and restaurants to indoor dining. Indoor venue capacity is limited to 25 people per room and indoor social gatherings to no more than two households of up to eight people.
Case information as of 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 28:
New cases today: 2,437
New deaths today: 14
Positivity rate: 8.95%
Total deaths: 1,885
Currently hospitalized: 1,722
Currently in ICU: 408
Currently on ventilator: 220