COVID-19: Ky. Breaks Weekly Record with Positive Cases
Kentucky saw its most COVID-19 positive cases in a single week Monday through Sunday last week, topping the previous record which was set just the week prior.
There were 30,680 positive cases from August 30 through September 5.
Over the past nine days, from August 30 through Monday, Tuesday, September 7, five counties in Northern Kentucky recorded 2,252 positive cases with 766 in Kenton, 668 in Boone, 537 in Campbell, 184 in Grant, and 97 in Pendleton.
“We continue to see more cases than is safe by any means,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “The bad news is we had the worst week ever last week. Our hospitals continue to be pushed to the brink. If we have one bad week, we can very quickly run out of ICU beds.”
On Sunday, Gov. Beshear announced the arrival of a National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) team at St. Claire Regional Medical Center in Morehead to assist the hospital in the current surge of COVID-19 cases. The governor has also used the Kentucky National Guard, Federal Emergency Management Agency Emergency Medical Services strike teams, and nursing students to help at strained health care facilities across the commonwealth.
Officials at St. Claire Regional Medical Center discussed via video message the help they’ve received during the current surge of COVID-19 thanks to the requests made by the governor. Disaster Medical Assistance Teams (DMAT) operate under the NDMS as part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
“The assistance of the assignment of the Kentucky National Guard, the request from the Governor for the HHS-DMAT team and the additional assistance from the nurses from the Galen College of Nursing students have been a godsend,” said Donald Lloyd II, president and chief executive officer.
“The DMAT team being here means that we’ve got a little bit of relief this time. I can’t stress how important that is. They’re providing relief to an already tight staff who are just exhausted. The DMAT team is able to take patients and that allows our team to rest a little bit while still working,” said Lerae Wilson, DNP and chief nursing officer.
“We have been overwhelmed for a while. Their arrival has helped us recoup, regroup and get better care. We completely are thankful to them and have great gratitude for their arrival,” said Dr. William Melahn, chief medical officer.
“It means so much to have that additional help. We have been burning at all ends, our staff, our entire team has just been working so hard. It’s just a relief and a little bit of light to have this trained group of people to come in to help us relieve some of that pressure from us,” said Courtney Hollingsworth, MSN, RN and associate chief nursing officer.
Mark Wade, principal of Boyle County High School, also shared his story of battling COVID-19 via video message and encouraged all Kentuckians to get vaccinated.
“I never thought I would be hospitalized. I was just 41 years old with no pre-existing conditions. I was pretty healthy. The virus is no joke. It doesn’t discriminate,” said Wade. “The vaccine was not available before I was hospitalized and became ill with COVID, but it is now. I trust that the vaccine will help me. Do it for yourself, do it for your family, get the vaccine. It just makes sense.”
There are three widely available and highly effective COVID-19 vaccines in the state. More than 2.56 million people in Kentucky have received at least one dose of a vaccine.
Meanwhile, the state's positivity rate is currently 13.74%. There are 2,353 people hospitalized due to COVID-19 including 661 in intensive care units and 433 on ventilators.