Thursday’s five deaths raises virus death total to 650 in Kentucky

FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 16, 2020) – As of 4 p.m. July 16, Gov. Beshear said there were at least 21,083 coronavirus cases in Kentucky, 413 of which were newly reported Thursday.

The Governor reemphasized that the rising case numbers show the need for everyone to wear a face covering in public or in close quarters with non-immediate family members, as required by his mandate.

“Today, we have a record number of kids under 5 diagnosed with COVID-19. These kids are counting on us to do the right thing,” said Gov. Beshear. “Our new cases come from all types of counties. And remember, deaths follow cases.”

Gov. Beshear reported five new deaths Thursday, raising the total to 650 Kentuckians lost to the virus. The deaths reported Thursday include a 91-year-old woman from Fayette County; a 59-year-old man and a 90-year-old woman from Knox County; and an 83-year-old man and a 92-year-old woman from Jefferson County.

“What we are seeing across the country is alarming. We are seeing state after state not just facing escalating cases, but facing devastation,” said Gov. Beshear.

As of Thursday, there have been at least 507,197 coronavirus tests performed in Kentucky. The positivity rate currently stands at 4.38%. At least 5,500 Kentuckians have recovered from the virus.

Unemployment Insurance Update
Today, Gov. Beshear announced that contractor Ernst & Young (EY) has processed 10,365 outstanding claims as of July 15. EY increased work hours from eight to 10 hours per day and also began working on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Going forward, EY expects to resolve 4,000 claims per day.

“As you all know, unemployment insurance has been difficult – most of all, of course, for those who have struggled to get it,” said Gov. Beshear. “But EY is getting more and more efficient. Remember to answer the phone when they call. The number is 502-333-9130.”

Safety Reporting Hotline
Gov. Beshear reminded Kentuckians that the COVID-19 reporting hotline is available to help keep everyone safe.

People who witness dangerous non-compliance with coronavirus mandates, including requirements for mask wearing, social distancing and sanitation, at Kentucky businesses are encouraged to call the COVID-19 reporting hotline at 833-KY SAFER (833-597-2337). Labor Cabinet personnel will monitor the hotline from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. EDT. To file a complaint online, click here.

Testing Update
Responding to some reports that some seeking coronavirus testing still are being asked to provide a doctor’s order, administration officials reiterated Thursday that the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, Department for Public Health (DPH) issued an order removing any such requirement to receive a COVID-19 test.