NKY has 36 new COVID cases, state has 283 cases, 9 deaths; Beshear talks protests, driver’s licenses

As of Friday afternoon, the NKY Health Department reported 36 additional cases of COVID-19 in Northern Kentucky, for 1,219 total cases. There have been 561 cases in Kenton County, 167 cases in Campbell County, 447 cases in Boone County and 44 cases in Grant County. There have been 65 total deaths related to COVID-19. Six hundred sixteen (616) individuals have recovered.

In his briefing, Gov. Andy Beshear reported 283 new cases and nine deaths, bringing the state’s totals to 9,464 cases and 418 deaths.

Louisville protest

Beshear spoke about Thursday night’s protest in Louisville over the shooting death of Breonna Taylor. Previously, he has called for further investigation of her death. The Governor encouraged all Kentuckians to seek justice peacefully and to listen to the concerns, fears and experiences of black or African-American community members.

“This is a very concerning shooting of an EMT, a young woman who worked to save lives of others here in Kentucky,” said Beshear. “In a broader context, this pandemic we’re facing has laid bare the inequalities that still exist in our society and that many times are fatal.”

He commended the protestors for largely following CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19. He also highlighted the disproportionate number of COVID-19 cases and deaths among black or African-American Kentuckians and committed to doing everything he could to reduce health inequality.

“While I’m trying to provide the right words, I don’t claim to understand the depths of pain and frustration that I know so many people feel,” Beshear said. “I can’t. But what I can commit to do is to listen and to do my best. To tell you that I want to move this world into a better place.”

Remote driver’s license and I.D. card renewal

Transportation Cabinet Secretary Jim Gray signed an executive order temporarily authorizing circuit court clerk offices to process expired driving credential renewals and replacement requests remotely.

Cardholders whose operator’s license, permit or identification card was lost or expired between March 1 and June 30, 2020, may apply with their local circuit court clerk to receive a new card in the mail. For more information, click here.

“This order is the next right step to help clerks safely serve Kentuckians impacted by the office closures caused by the pandemic,” said Beshear. “The temporary measure will allow contactless service to help minimize crowding and help offices gradually return to full-service operations.”

Medicaid Managed Care Organization (MCO) contracts

Beshear and Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Eric Friedlander today announced the Commonwealth of Kentucky has awarded the state’s Medicaid Managed Care Organization (MCO) contract to five health care companies that will manage benefits for the state’s Medicaid enrollees.

The five companies are Aetna, Humana, Molina Healthcare, UnitedHealthcare and WellCare. Aetna will also serve children in Kentucky SKY, the Medicaid risk-based managed care delivery program for the state foster care program and the Department for Juvenile Justice.

“Health care is a basic human right, and ensuring coverage for approximately 90 percent of Medicaid’s 1.4 million population is of the utmost importance to my administration,” Beshear said.

“The expansion of Medicaid in the commonwealth has been lifesaving for many families who struggled to find and afford coverage. As we move forward, we must continue to provide equal access for every Kentuckian who needs quality care.”

For more information, click here.

Absentee Ballot Application Portal online

Beshear is encouraging all voters to use a new Absentee Ballot Application Portal now available online. A link to the State Board of Elections’ portal can be found at govoteky.com. He urged everyone who plans to vote in next month’s primary elections to go to the portal and request an absentee mail-in ballot.

Click image for website

Beshear announced that Kentuckians have already made 190,000 requests through the new portal announced a week ago.

“It’s not just your duty as an American to fill out the Census, it’s your duty to vote,” said Beshear. “We have our primary election coming up in June, and there is a safe way for you to do it. Go online and request your absentee ballot.”

The total number is well over 200,000 after including counties like Jefferson and Kenton that started their sign-up process earlier.

The Governor reminded Kentuckians to please be patient with clerks, as they are working very hard to get ballots out.

For those who just registered to vote, it takes a couple of days for their registration to be processed and for them to show up in the system to apply.

Fitness centers reopening

Fitness centers are among the list of businesses set to reopen in Kentucky on June 1.

According to District Director of Health, Lynne Saddler, MD, MPH, “COVID-19 is still spreading in Northern Kentucky. All of us must take steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19, wherever we go and whatever we do.”

Here are some tips to reduce the risk of COVID-19 at gyms and fitness centers:

• Do not go out if you are sick. 

• The number of visitors in fitness centers has been limited to 33% of capacity. If a place looks crowded, 
leave and come back later. 

• Wash hands often. 

• Make other plans for child care – child care services and child play areas are closed until at least June 

• Maintain at least 6 feet of physical distance from others on equipment, in classes, etc. High 
contact/team sports areas, such as basketball courts, football fields and soccer fields, are closed until 
additional requirements and guidance are issued. 

• Call ahead or go online before heading out, as your fitness center may have additional practices in 
place, such as contactless payment options, encouraging customers to bring their own equipment (i.e. personal mats, bands, etc.) and water bottles, and encouraging customers to wipe down equipment with disinfecting wipes before and after use. Fitness centers may also offer special hours for at-risk populations.

For additional details on COVID- 19 cases in Northern Kentucky, click here.

— to www.nkytribune.com

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