Beshear asking Ky. hospitals to cease elective procedures, childcare facilities to plan for closure

Protecting yourself from coronavirus

FRANKFORT, Ky. (FOX19) - Kentucky has four new confirmed cases of coronavirus, Governor Andy Beshear announced Saturday.

He announced two confirmed cases in a press conference at 4 p.m. and two additional confirmed cases in a release around 8:30 p.m..

The brings the total number of positive cases in the Commonwealth to 18.

In his press conference, Beshear announced he is asking all Kentucky hospitals to cease elective procedures. He also said he is instructing childcare facilities to create plans for closure within 72 hours of the state asking if the state determines it’s necessary to do so.

“While children remain at low risk, they can carry the virus and we must do everything we can to reduce its spread and protect our most vulnerable, including our senior citizens,” Beshear said. “We are going to get through this as one team – Team Kentucky. We must remain calm and take care of each other by practicing good hygiene, social distancing and sharing."

Regarding the recommendation that Kentucky hospitals cease elective procedures, Beshear said he would rely on the hospitals’ judgement for what is “elective.”

“We need all the capacity we can to deal with the cases that we believe we are going to see,” he explained. “We are going to work with them to give them the flexibility to repurpose a lot of their stuff."

Additionally, Beshear said a patient with confirmed coronavirus in Nelson County has refused treatment and self-quarantine. Currently the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family SERvices is working with a local county attorney and county judge to obtain an order to force him to quarantine inches home.

Seven cases have been reported in Harrison County, four cases in Jefferson County, five in Fayette County, one in Bourbon County, one in Nelson County and one in Montgomery County.

Beshear said a 27-year-old woman in Harrison County has reportedly recovered and is out of the hospital, the first instance of a patient fully recovering from the virus in Kentucky.

Another patient, whose location Beshear did not give out, is in “pretty bad shape" and there is an expectation the patient will not survive.

Beshear said social distancing is “critically important” in managing the spread of the outbreak.

He added he is working to ensure coronavirus testing will be free to uninsured individuals. Previously he announced copays and deductibles would be waived for insured individuals seeking a test.

Kentucky’s COVID-19 hotline for people who have concerns about their own conditions is 1.800.722.5725.

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