State Dept. for Public Health graph, adapted by Ky. Health News; to enlarge, click on it.
Beshear noted that the class sizes, which are determined by children’s age, would be the same as before the pandemic but the facilities would still be expected to follow a set of guidelines to ensure the safety of the children and the staff:
- Classrooms must still stay in groups and not mix groups of children throughout the day.
- All other health and safety precautions established in emergency regulations are still in place.
- All child-care providers are encouraged to receive the Covid-19 vaccination.
- Visitor restrictions remain in place, but the emergency regulation has been changed to allow access by candidates for Child Development Associate credentials and their professors.
A celebratory milestone: Beshear, first lady Britainy Beshear and Health Commissioner Steven Stack held a ceremony at the State Capitol Monday recognizing the milestone of 1 million Kentuckians getting their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine. “These vaccines are going to take us out of this pandemic and into a new era,” Beshear said. “This is truly both a miracle of modern medicine and a tribute to so many Kentuckians that have worked to make this happen.”
He noted that Kentucky administered its first coronavirus vaccine just three months ago, on Dec. 14, and said the state has set another weekly record, with one day remaining in the vaccine-reporting week. He said the state now has 567 vaccine sites, with more expected to be forthcoming.
“Even as we mark this hopeful milestone, we must be clear-eyed to know that this war is not yet won,” he said, adding later, “How we honor them is to ensure that we defeat this pandemic as quickly as possible and we make sure that everybody counts, that everybody gets this vaccine, that we bring everybody with us to the finish line.”
Finally, he said the state has hit the 100% efficiency mark in its delivery of the vaccines, meaning that every dose the state has received has been put into someone’s arm.
Assuming that the state’s vaccine supply continues to expand, Beshear said, he expects to not only meet President Biden’s goal of being able to vaccinate every willing adult by the end of May, but to beat that goal. He reiterated, “We are going to defeat Covid-19 this year.”
Pandemic trends: Overall, measures of the pandemic in Kentucky continued to decline, though some showed signs of a plateau.
The number of new cases for the Monday-to-Sunday week declined for the ninth week in a row. The latest was smaller, but was still a clear decline.
Beshear noted that only eight counties are in the “red zone” for places averaging more than 25 new cases per 100,000 residents over the previous seven days. The state’s daily report said the statewide rate has declined to 13.39 per 100,000.
In other pandemic news Monday:
- Kentucky hospitals reported 464 Covid-19 patients, 114 of them in intensive care and 67 of those on ventilators. All numbers were down slightly.
- The 23 deaths were a Barren County man, 47; a Bullitt County man, 74; a Calloway County woman, 92; three Fayette County women, 66, 69, and 91, and a man, 79; a Greenup County man, 71; in Jefferson County, three women, 70, 85, and 86, and two men, 78 and 83; a Kenton County man, 47; a Logan County woman, 72, and a man, 84; a Lyon County man, 48; a Meade County man, 70; a Mercer County woman, 64; a Montgomery County woman, 76; a Pike County woman, 82; in Warren County, woman, 60, and a man, 63.
- Counties with 10 or more new cases were Jefferson, 91; Fayette, 34, Warren, 16; Laurel, 14; Knox, 12; McCracken, 12; and Boone, 11.