FRANKFORT, Ky. — Gov. Andy Beshear brought back his coronavirus briefing on Monday to express concern about an uptick in cases and to recommend actions Kentuckians can take to protect themselves.
Of particular concern is the number of cases involving the delta variant of the virus, which is considered far more contagious and more dangerous than previous strains. After seeing the state’s positivity rate fall below 1 percent earlier this year, that number has now risen to nearly 5.5 percent.
The virus is being aided in its transmission by a large number of Kentuckians who have not been vaccinated. Only 10 of the state’s 120 counties have vaccination rates above 50 percent.
And while the vast majority of cases have occurred in those who have not been vaccinated, those who have been vaccinated are still at risk, especially if they have a pre-existing condition that leaves them immune compromised.
“We are seeing a rise in Kentucky,” Gov. Beshear said. “We are not yet at the point so many other states have gotten, and this is the unvaccinated states feeling the brunt. And the reason we haven’t is we have done a better job than many states at getting individuals vaccinated. But it’s just starting at the least amount of individuals vaccinated and those regions, and we starting to see the uptick now as well.”
While the governor did not issue any mandates regarding the surge in cases, he did offer recommendations. They include for Kentuckians who have not been vaccinated and those who are immune compromised to wear masks indoors when they are not at home. He also suggested that those who are vaccinated but work in jobs with significant public exposure to wear masks while at work.
Finally, Gov. Beshear recommended that all unvaccinated Kentuckians get the vaccine, as soon as possible.