x
Breaking News
More () »

'Omicron has hit us harder' | Gov. Andy Beshear says virus cases have doubled as positivity rate surges to nearly 21%

Kentucky saw more than 6,400 cases last Thursday, the highest at any point of the pandemic.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — COVID-19 is continuing to hit Kentucky in a big way as cases have escalated due to the quick-spreading omicron variant.

Since last week, Kentucky’s positivity rate has risen to 20.72% -- the highest at any point during the pandemic.

“We have never seen an escalation in cases – meaning how infectious this virus is as we have with omicron,” Gov. Andy Beshear said.

Kentucky closed out the week with 29,955 cases, twice the amount of cases seen the previous week.

About 4,111 new cases were reported on Monday and Beshear said with so many people testing at home and not reporting it to health departments, the number could be even higher.

Beshear also urged the unvaccinated to get their shots. He said those who have not received a vaccine with 4.9 times likely to get the virus.

On the vaccination front, the governor said 62% of Kentuckians have had at least one shot.

Numbers for the holiday weekend:

  • Dec. 30, 2021: 6,441 cases, 27 deaths
  • Dec. 31, 2021: 5,748 cases, 28 deaths
  • Jan. 1, 2022: 4,359 cases, 26 deaths
  • Jan. 2, 2022: 2,767, 24 deaths
  • Jan. 3, 2022: 4,111 cases, 15 deaths

Jefferson County has also seen an alarming trend.

According to Louisville Department of Public Health and Wellness officials, the city saw an average of 500 positive COVID-19 cases per day. Last week, those numbers tripled with 1,742 as of Dec. 29, 2021.

The city’s positivity rate has also jumped to 20% -- which officials believe is the highest at any point during the pandemic.

COVID-19 tests are in short supply not only locally but nationally. Officials are encouraging those to get tested if they’ve been exposed to someone or showing symptoms associated with the virus.

Louisville's list of locations with take-home tests is dwindling. The Americana Community Center in South Louisville was one of few locations with tests still available. The Development Coordinator said it is "entirely possible" they'll be out of tests soon. The line for in-person tests there stretched onto the road Monday.

The city is expected to give its update on the virus Tuesday morning.

Dr. Steven Stack also gave updated guidance with the surge of omicron.

Kentucky Department of Health Quarantine Guidance

If you are not fully vaccinated or booster-eligible but not yet boosted and have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19:

  • Quarantine for 10 days from your last exposure
  • Quarantine may be shortened to 5 days if you have no symptoms and test negative for COVID-19 on day 5.
  • Wear a well-fitting face mask for 10 full days from your last exposure
  • Stay home and get a test if symptoms develop

If you are boosted or fully-vaccinated but not yet booster-eligible and have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19:

  • You do not need to quarantine if you do not have symptoms
  • Wear a well-fitting face mask for 10 full days from your last exposure
  • Get tested for COVID-19 on day 5
  • Stay home and get a test if symptoms develop

*Booster-eligible people 16 years of age or older who completed their primary mRNA (Pfizer/Moderna) vaccine series > 6 months ago or their J&J/Janssen vaccine > 2 months ago.

Kentucky Department of Health’s Isolation Guidance

If you have tested positive for COVID-19 and have symptoms:

  • Isolate for 10 days from the date the symptoms began
  • If symptoms fully resolve, isolation may be shortened and end after day 5 on the first day without symptoms
  • Wear a well-fitting face mask for 10 full days since the start of symptoms. Isolation should not be shortened if a mask cannot be worn properly and consistently

If you have tested positive for COVID-19 and have never had symptoms:

  • Isolate for 5 days from the date you had your test done
  • Wear a well-fitting face mask for 5 additional days. Isolation should be extended to 10 days if you are unable to wear a mask properly and consistently.

RELATED VIDEO

Paid Advertisement