Northern Kentucky is seeing a significant rise in the reported number of COVID-19 cases. The region currently has a total of 5,506 cases of COVID-19, including 1,484 active cases, and last week saw the second highest weekly number of cases since the start of the pandemic. The number of deaths remains at 96 for the region.
“We are starting to see concerning trends here in Northern Kentucky,” stated NKY Health’s District Director of Health, Lynne Saddler, MD, MPH, “Most of our health district is showing accelerated spread of COVID-19 and unless we slow this down, we will see a third surge here.” A similar trend is being seen across Kentucky and in other parts of the United States.
Northern Kentucky’s location, bordering Ohio and Indiana where rates of COVID-19 are higher, may be contributing to the growing number of cases. However, other factors such as more people physically returning to work and school, combined with social gatherings and events and waning adherence to protective measures are part of the increased spread. In addition, Northern Kentucky is seeing a resurgence of hotspots in some long-term care facilities.
The growth in cases is especially troublesome as cold weather and the holidays approach and more and gatherings move indoors. Although the number of deaths has remained steady so far, Dr. Saddler is concerned about where Northern Kentucky may be heading.
“Northern Kentucky is entering a critical phase of the pandemic. We could see our highest case numbers to come and along with that, the possibility of an overwhelmed health care system and an increase in deaths in our most susceptible residents. I don’t want to see that happen here, so I am asking every Northern Kentuckian to take action now.”
Northern Kentuckians can turn this trend around by taking these important steps – wear a face covering, stay six feet away from others, avoid crowded places, keep gatherings small and ideally limited to immediate family and household members, and wash hands frequently. Additional measures include getting a flu shot and if you smoke or use electronic cigarettes, talk to your health care provider for help with quitting or call 1-800-QUITNOW for assistance.
The Northern Kentucky Health Department provides high quality public health services to more than 400,000 residents of Boone, Campbell, Grant and Kenton Counties, with a goal of preventing disease, promoting wellness and protecting against health threats. The Health Department seeks to be a nationwide leader in public health, and was one of the first in the country to earn national public health accreditation. For more information, visit the website.