FRANKFORT, KY (WOWK) – Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear has signed a new executive order ending all former health orders regarding COVID-19 restrictions in the Bluegrass State.
“After more than a year of being at war with this virus, we have the hard-won knowledge on how to lessen the spread, and now to even defeat the virus with safe and effective vaccines,” Beshear said.
The governor said this will be the last briefing focusing on the crisis phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. Beshear says while there will be no additional briefings where he reads the ages and counties of those who have died due to COVID-19, he encourages Kentuckians to continue lighting their homes green until the state reports no more deaths from the virus.
“As we have all along, let’s remember that those aren’t just ages or counties or genders. They are irreplaceable Kentuckians that will be missed by their families and their communities,” Beshear said.
Beshear says as of today, nine more Kentuckians have died in connection to the virus, bringing the total to 7,147 deaths throughout the pandemic. The state is also reporting 237 new COVID-19 cases and a current positivity rate of 2.05%. Since COVID-19 was first reported the Bluegrass State on March 6, 2020, Kentucky health officials have confirmed 461,717 cases of the virus.
As of Friday, 2,106,464 Kentuckians have received at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine. As of last week’s data from the CDC, 49.5% of Kentucky adults 18 and over are fully vaccinated.
The governor says any business owners who do not feel ready to lift the mask mandate in their business or any Kentuckians who are still uncomfortable going without a mask are still welcome to do so as additional protections for themselves, their employees and those around them.
Kentuckians who have gotten at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine are eligible for the “Shot at a Million.” Three winners ages 18 and over will win $1,000,000 and 15 Kentuckians between the ages of 12 and 17 will win full scholarships to a Kentucky public college, university, technical or trade school, which includes tuition, room-and-board and books.