By TOM LATEK, Kentucky Today
FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) – There was another large number of new COVID-19 cases reported in Kentucky on Tuesday as the delta variant continues its dangerous surge, not only in the state, but across the nation and around the world.
A total of 3,276 new cases were reported to state public health officials, making it 19,737 cases during the last seven days and 522,209 overall since the pandemic began.
Nine Kentucky counties reported 60 or more new cases: Jefferson 417, Fayette 304, Hardin 109, Warren 107, Laurel 95, Pike 94, Kenton 67, Boone 65, and Madison 63.
There were also eight new deaths, which raises the number of Kentuckians lost due to COVID-19, to 7,459.
The positivity rate also continued its month and a half climb, reaching 12.47%, which is 1.25% higher than seven days ago. On July 17, the positivity rate was 4.76%, and only 2.06% on June 17. June 17 also saw 255 new cases, meaning the August 17 total is nearly 13 times what it was only two months ago.
A total of 112 of Kentucky’s 120 counties are in the red zone, meaning they have a COVID incidence rate of at least 25 per 100,000 population. The good news is that is one less red county than was reported on Monday.
A good number that is rising is the one that indicates how many Kentuckians have been vaccinated against COVID-19. It now stands at 2,425,305, meaning 66% of all Kentuckians, 18 and older, have received at least one dose of the vaccine.
Breaking it down by age: those 65 or older have an 84% vaccination rate, 69% for people 50-64, 56% for those 40-49, 51% for ages 30-39, and 40% of Kentuckians 18-29. No accurate number is available for those 12-17, who were the last age group to be approved by federal regulators to receive the vaccine.
Gov. Andy Beshear and State Public Health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack continue to urge all Kentuckians to get vaccinated, which you can now do at such places as drug stores and supermarkets. You will even be able to do it at the Kentucky State Fair, August 19-29, and be rewarded for doing so.
Throughout the Fair, the Kentucky Association of Health Plans, or KAHP, will be giving away a free unlimited ride wristband and a $20 gift card (while they last) when attendees 12 and older go to the West Wing Health Pavilion to receive a COVID-19 vaccine shot. A choice of vaccines will be offered at the Fair.
Medicaid members may also be eligible to receive an incentive offered by their health plan in addition to the KAHP giveaway.