Real-time updates: Kentucky reports second highest single day increase in COVID-19 cases

There are 674 new cases, bringing the overall total to 24,060.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Governor Andy Beshear will hold coronavirus briefings Monday- Friday at 4 p.m. this week.

Tuesday, July 21

Governor Beshear reported the state’s second highest daily increase in positive cases. There are 674 new cases, bringing the overall total to 24,060. Three more people have died, bringing the total deaths to 674. So far, 6,927 people have recovered

Of today’s new cases, 22 of them are children under the age of five.

“When we say more young people testing positive, we mean really young,” Gov. Beshear said.

The governor said the currently positivity rate is 4.37%, and 549,208 tests have been performed. 

Lt. Governor Coleman spoke about Kentucky education, saying school districts should be flexible to keep students, teachers and staff safe. She also asked for parents to have grace for superintendents.

Coleman announced school staff will have unlimited COVID-19 emergency days.

A virtual town hall on reopening schools will be held on Thursday.

RELATED: State of emergency in Louisville extended to August 31, Mayor Fischer announces in briefing

Monday, July 20

Gov. Andy Beshear is reporting 258 new positive COVID-19 cases and 1 new death. That brings the state’s total to 22,414 and total tested to 533,143.

Eight kids under 5 have tested positive for COVID-19; two are three months old.

The Kentucky Department of Health has issued a travel advisory for Kentuckians who have traveled to states reporting high numbers of COVID-19. The advisory recommends a 14-day self-quarantine for travelers who went to any of eight states reporting positive testing rate equal to or greater than 15% for COVID-19 testing. The advisory also includes one state quickly approaching a positive testing rate of 15% and one U.S. Territory.

States were identified from data reported to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine Coronavirus Resource Center. They include Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Nevada, South Carolina and Texas. The rate of positive patient tests in Mississippi is nearing 15%, so travelers to Mississippi are also asked to voluntarily self-isolate for 14 days. Puerto Rico is the U.S. Territory that has been added.

Dr. Steven Stack, Kentucky’s Public Health Commissioner, stressed that this is a recommendation and not a mandate. “I am appealing to Kentuckians who have traveled to these states or to Puerto Rico to consider the interest of your health and the health of others. Please, if you have been to any of these places, stay home for 14 days, starting from the date you left that location.”

He added that people planning to visit these destinations in the near future would be wise to reconsider their travel plans.

“Avoid going to these areas, if you are able,” Dr. Stack said. “If plans can’t be changed, self-quarantine after getting back to Kentucky.”

He cautioned that this list could change, and he asks the public to remain aware.

Briefly, home quarantine includes these steps:

  • Remain at home and avoid all in-person activities. This includes work, grocery stores and pharmacies, public events and public places.
  • Do not have visitors in your home.
  • If you live in a home with other people, stay in a separate room. If this is not possible, wear a face mask when you are in the same room and stay at least six feet away from others.
  • Wash your hands and use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer often. Do not share personal items such as dishes, cups, forks, spoons and towels.
  • Do not leave home except to seek medical care. If you need to see a provider for reasons other than a medical emergency, please call in advance and discuss the care you need.
  • In the event of a medical emergency, call 9-1-1. Indicate that you are in home quarantine for novel coronavirus exposure. Keep a face mask on until you are asked by a health care provider to remove it.
  • Do not use public transportation or ride-share services.
  • Check yourself for fever twice a day and record it in a log or piece of paper.
  • Contact your local health department for additional help, including arranging for food and other essential deliveries if you are in need.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include a fever of greater than 100.4 degrees; respiratory symptoms, such as shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, and loss of smell or taste. If any of these symptoms are present, the person experiencing them should get tested for COVID-19 as soon as possible. A list of testing sites is posted on the kycovid19.ky.gov site.

12:45 p.m.

The University of Louisville announced voluntary activities for men’s and women’s swimming will be suspended after three people in the program tested positive for COVID-19. Activities at Ralph Wright Natatorium were suspended starting July 18. Those impacted are in quarantine. 

 9:39 a.m.

The Kentucky governor’s offices announced briefings will be held Monday-through Friday at 4 p.m. this week. This is a change from the once-weekly briefings the governor had been holding in recent weeks. 

The change comes as Kentucky saw the largest single-day COVID-19 case increase on Sunday. That new case total was 979, bringing the state’s overall total to 23,161.

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