FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky’s coronavirus-related death toll surpassed 9,000 on Thursday, a grim reminder of the trauma caused by the pandemic as virus cases and hospitalizations trend downward, Gov. Andy Beshear said.
The state’s daily COVID-19 report, to be released later Thursday, will include at least 50 more virus-related deaths, pushing the death toll past 9,000, the governor said.
“That’s more than we’ve lost in any modern war, any two of them put together,” Beshear said. “It’s the largest loss of life over a period of time than any of us have ever lived through.”
The state will endure more “tough news” from additional COVID-19 deaths in coming weeks, even as it appears “the strength of the pandemic is waning,” he said.
“While we are all excited about the trends and where we’re going, let’s remember that we’re going to live with these scars and trauma and difficulty and loss,” the governor said.
Virus-related hospitalizations in Kentucky have dropped 17% in the past week, easing pressure on beleaguered hospitals, he said. Still, 58 of 96 hospitals continue to report critical staffing shortages.
While the virus’s spread is lessening, Beshear added: “To say we are fully emerging from it may be premature, but we are moving in the right direction.”
Watch Gov. Beshear's "Team Kentucky" update in full below: