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COVID-19: 15 New Cases, 2 Deaths in NKY; State Total is 770

Fifteen newly confirmed cases of coronavirus/COVID-19 have been confirmed in four Northern Kentucky counties, the Northern Kentucky Health Department said.

The health department covers Kenton, Boone, Campbell, and Grant counties. Gov. Andy Beshear on Thursday also identified one newly confirmed case in Pendleton Co.

The health department also reported two more deaths in Northern Kentucky, a Grant County resident over 70, and a Kenton County resident over 80. Both had underlying health issues, the health department said. 

In Northern Kentucky, there have now been 87 confirmed cases of the respiratory virus that is part of a global pandemic. Beshear said that there were 100 new cases since Wednesday and a total of 770 in the state now.

“Many people have been asking us what they can do to help out health care workers and first responders in the fight against COVID-19," said Dr. Lynne Saddler, Northern Kentucky district director of health. "At this time, the single most helpful thing you can do is to stay healthy at home. By staying healthy at home, we are preventing the spread of COVID-19, and protecting those who are working so hard to serve us and those we love.”

In addition to the newly confirmed cases, Beshear announced further directives on Thursday. He also announced that he recommended to the state's public school leaders that they should remain closed through May 1.

Effective Friday, April 3, Kentucky State Parks and the Kentucky Horse Park will suspend all overnight reservations for park lodges, cabins and campgrounds until further notice. All upcoming reservations will be canceled, and refunds will be issued.

Kentucky State Parks will be open to the public between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Park visitors will have access to park trails and scenic sites during these designated hours. Golf courses will remain open. Park visitors are encouraged to check the website for golf course hours of operation. All state park lodges, cabins, playgrounds and campgrounds will be closed. Food service will also be suspended until further notice.

Beshear also stated that visitors coming to Kentucky from out of state should quarantine here for at least fourteen days. 

The governor also expanded opportunities for retired public works, allowing state, county, and city retirees to be hired again. Retired first responders have already been granted the opportunity to be brought back. 

Meanwhile, the Kentucky State Fairgrounds in Louisville will host a 2,000-bed field hospital to accommodate any surge in patients.

-Michael Monks, editor & publisher