LOUISVILLE, Ky. — This blog will be updated daily with the latest information on COVID-19 in Kentucky. You can also see the newest stories in our Coronavirus section.
Monday, March 23
A new hotline has been created to report circumstances, businesses or situations believed to be dangerous due to lack of social distancing. The COVID-19 Kentucky Safer line is open from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. but residents can also leave a message.
The state has seen a 21-case jump in coronavirus, bringing the overall state total to 124. Of those total cases, 34 are from Louisville.
Governor Andy Beshear: World Health Organization says coronavirus is escalating. Surgeon General says this week will get bad.
Beshear confirms 4th death of COVID-19 in Kentucky. Victim was an 82-year-old Lexington woman with underlying health issues. He said the Governor’s Mansion will light up green in her honor.
The U.S. Postal Service confirmed an employee at the Louisville Processing and Distribution Center tested positive for COVID-19.
Officials said they believe the risk is low for fellow employees, but they have reached out to public health officials for guidance.
Sunday, March 22
A list sent from the governor’s office shows gives an idea of what retail must close by 8 p.m. Monday.
Governor Andy Beshear says the state is now up to 103 cases statewide.
So far, Beshear says 2,000 tests have been administered and the average age of a coronavirus patient is 53.3.
The Kentucky coronavirus hotline has received more than 22,800 calls; averaging about 2,400 daily.
Monday, the governor says non-essential retail businesses are expected to close at 8 p.m. These businesses include clothing/shoe stores, bookstores, auto dealerships, florists.
Liquor stores can also remain open only with curbside and delivery.
They do not include pharmacies, drug stores, grocery stores, gas stations and auto repair shops.
“It’s going to take this type of sacrifice and continuing to take more steps each day or every other day to do what we need to do,” he said.
He says “shelter in place” will not be how Kentucky handles the virus, instead preferring to use the term “healthy at home.”
In another new update, Gov. Beshear has now mandated starting Monday, March 23, all medical facilities must stop elective procedures.
“The vast majority of providers have done it voluntarily and are truly making plans, are absolutely on Team Kentucky but whether it’s a group of chiropractors that have been exceedingly difficult or others that think they are the exception, it’s now requiring us to turn it into a mandate,” Beshear said.
The governor also said two new labs have begun testing for the virus, including one at the University of Kentucky and a private lab.
Mayor Fischer says 28 of the 99 cases of COVID-19 are in Jefferson County, including the fatality.
The mayor says the Louisville Metro Revenue Commission will extend its annual occupational license tax filing.
The April 15 deadline has now been moved to July 15.
Metro 3-1-1 will take calls beginning Monday about businesses not complying with the governor’s orders to close to flatten the curve. Mayor Fischer says if you see large gatherings, they will send proper enforcement and take more restrictive measures to stop the disease.
“Our number one job is to protect life and citizens in this city,” Fischer said. “And if necessary we will shut the businesses down. So please do the right thing today so you’re not going to have a bigger problem tomorrow when you don’t have to get the government involved with enforcing this.”
The Big Four Bridge will be lit up Sunday as a sign of compassion.
Fischer is urging Louisvillians to fly the American flag as a way to show this country will get through this.
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul has tested positive for COVID-19. The Senator made the announcement via Twitter.
In the tweet, it says Paul is feeling fine and is in quarantine. He is asymptomatic and was tested out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events.
Masonic Home Louisville has confirmed that a former patient at the daily living campus has tested positive for coronavirus.
The patient was living at the Sam Swope Care Center in the Crescent Hill neighborhood.
According to Masonic Home Louisville, the patient was in continuous isolation while receiving care and all isolation protocols were applied. They say they were notified by a local hospital about the former patient’s diagnosis.
The Kentucky government website for COVID-19 reported 12 new cases bringing the total to 99.
More from WHAS11: