Bell records 37th COVID death

Beshear says vaccinations have to be done faster

There have been 37 deaths in Bell County related to COVID-19, with three new deaths being reported Monday.

The Bell County Health Department’s COVID-19 update for Monday also included 24 new individual cases locally.

According to the Bell County Health Department, the county reached a total of 1,913 cases, with seven people hospitalized.

Those hospitalized were males between the ages of 46 and 86. Female hospitalizations range from ages 44 to 72.

There were 220 active individual cases and 0 active long-term care cases.

Governor Andy Beshear advised the state’s goal is to administer 90 percent of vaccine doses within seven days of receipt by the state, according to www.kentucky.gov.

“We’ve got to get these things out faster. I’m not OK with the pace that they are currently being provided. We have too many people out there who are rightfully anxious, and they need to see this whole country pick up the pace. We are certainly going to do it here in Kentucky,” said Gov. Beshear. “Today we’re going to talk about some changes we’re making, some additional clarification, so if we ever have another case like those two stores that thaw too much vaccine again, they know exactly what population should get it.”

The planned vaccination phases are:
• Phase 1a: Long-term care facilities, assisted living facilities, health care personnel
• Phase 1b: First responders, Kentuckians age >= 70, K-12 school personnel
• Phase 1c: Kentuckians age >= 60, anyone older than 16 with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) highest-risk conditions for COVID-19, all essential workers
•Phase 2: Age >= 40
•Phase 3: Age >= 16
•Phase 4: Children under the age of 16 if the vaccine is approved for this age group (estimated to comprise 18% of Kentucky’s population)

According to the state’s website at kentucky.gov, Beshear reported 2,319 new cases on Monday, bringing the state’s total case number to 279,143. Beshear announced 26 deaths, bringing Kentucky’s COVID-19 related deaths to 2,749. As of Monday, at least 3,504,553 coronavirus tests have been performed in Kentucky. At least 37,455 Kentuckians have recovered from the virus, and the positivity rate was 11.2 percent.

The Bell County Health Department recommends the following steps to help slow the spread of COVID 19:
• Wash hands with soap and water before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or after using the restroom;
• Avoid contact with people who are sick;
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth;
• Wear a mask when in public and social distancing is difficult.