Number of new COVID-19 cases dip significantly in Whitley County Tuesday, but county still in the red
Following several days of double-digit reports, officials at the Whitley County Health Department reported seven new COVID–19 cases on Tuesday.
That brings the total number of cases in Whitley County to 551.
There are currently 181 active cases, with five people hospitalized, and 176 isolating at home.
With the newest cases, Whitley County’s COVID–19 incidence rate on Tuesday was 50.4, which is the third-highest in the state behind Webster and Henderson Counties.
Under Gov. Andy Beshear’s COVID–19 guidelines for school districts across the state, districts in counties that fall in the red zone, meaning more than 25 cases per 100,000 population based on a seven-day rolling average, are recommended to use virtual learning until the number decreases.
The COVID–19 incidence rate for all 120 counties may be found online at www.ky.covid19.gov.
The Knox County Health Department reported three new COVID–19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases to 557.
Officials noted one child is among the new cases.
There are currently 86 active cases in Knox County.
With the new cases, Knox County’s COVID–19 incidence rate was 21.1 on Tuesday, placing it in the orange zone.
The Laurel County Health Department reported 18 new COVID–19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the county’s total to 1,019.
Officials noted one of the new cases required hospitalization. One case was in a congregate setting.
There are currently 315 active cases in Laurel County, of which 12 are hospitalized. Seventy-nine of the cases are in a congregate setting.
Laurel County’s COVID–19 incidence rate on Tuesday was 26.5 placing it in the red zone.
The Bell County Health Department reported two new COVID–19 cases on Tuesday, bringing the county’s total to 524.
There are 35 current cases, of which three are currently hospitalized.
Bell County’s COVID–19 incidence rate was 15.4 on Tuesday, placing it in the orange zone.
According to state health officials there were 1,054 new COVID–19 cases on Tuesday, with four new deaths.
Beshear emphasized Tuesday that the state is on pace to beat the record number of new COVID–19 cases it set last week when 6,126 new cases were reported.
With a mortality rate of 1.7 percent in Kentucky, Beshear noted that would mean 104 COVID–19 related deaths in just one week.
“It shows you just how quickly the number of people we lose can accelerate,” Beshear said.
“We must act now,” he said.
While Beshear said he would take steps, if necessary, to stop the spike, it is not a matter of new steps, but wearing a mask, social distancing and avoiding large gatherings.
“There are fewer people wearing a mask than in July when we instituted the mask mandate,” Beshear said adding that he had extended the mask mandate for an additional 30 days.
Beshear said he had a Zoom meeting with county judge-executives and mayors from across the state on Tuesday in an effort to redouble efforts to have people wear masks in public.
Beshear said he asked the local officials to say something to their local business owners if they go to one and see individuals not following the mask mandate.
“No shoes, no shirt, no mask, no service!” Beshear said.