Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear's Son Tests Positive for COVID-19

Kentucky has had a 44% increase in COVID-19 cases over the last 14 days, data from the "New York Times" shows.

Jan 26, 2022 at 3:37 pm
click to enlarge Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear leads a media briefing on Aug. 10, 2021. - Image: YouTube video still
Image: YouTube video still
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear leads a media briefing on Aug. 10, 2021.

Kentucky's months-long surge of COVID-19 has finally caught up to Gov. Andy Beshear's family.

Beshear announced this week that his son Will, 12, has tested positive for COVID-19. Beshear and the rest of his family tested negative on Jan. 24, and Beshear said he will continue to test daily and follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

Beshear added that Will was "generally asymptomatic" and is fully vaccinated and boosted.

"My son is generally asymptomatic, we believe because he is vaccinated and boosted,” Beshear said. "In fact, he is shooting basketball right now, by himself. The vaccines and booster truly protected him."

On Monday, Dr. Steven Stack, commissioner of the Kentucky Department for Public Health, said that pediatric COVID-19 cases are on the rise. Beshear added that only 13.3% of children within the state are fully vaccinated.

"Approximately 25% of new COVID-19 cases reported each day in Kentucky are children. Vaccination provides assurance that children can remain in school and protected against COVID-19," Stack said. "For parents who have not yet vaccinated your children, I encourage you to talk with your pediatrician. It’s important that you make an informed decision and have confidence that you are taking important steps to keep your children safe from this disease that has caused so much harm to our families and communities."

According to data from the CDC, Kentucky's seven-day average of COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people is 24,287 as of Jan. 26. The seven-day positivity rate is more than 25%.

Kentucky has had a 44% increase in COVID-19 cases over the last 14 days, data from the New York Times shows. Hospitalizations are up 27% over that same period.

Stack said that COVID-19 cases in Kentucky with the Omicron variant may peak in the next two weeks. Stack based his prediction on patterns that Omicron surges have followed in Rhode Island, New York and the United Kingdom. Typically, cases will start to fall three weeks after the surge’s start and descend sharply after that. Kentucky has a lower vaccination rate than those areas, though, so the state might experience a wider spike, Stack said.

But a reduction of Omicron wouldn't mean the end of the pandemic, Stack warned. He said that the backside of an Omicron peak will still be painful for hospitals, which likely have another month of difficulty in store. Hospitals throughout Kentucky as well as Ohio and the rest of the nation have been overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients, reduced staff and exhausted healthcare providers.

Still, Stack struck a positive note at the end of his COVID update.

“For the rest of society, I really do think 2022 is going to look a lot better,” he said. “And I think we’re going to get to graduations in the summertime, and it’s going to be a lot better. And we’re going to be back to a lot of our activities in much the way we used to enjoy them.”

A portion of this story was published by CityBeat sister newspaper LEO Weekly.

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