By Greg Bird
McCreary County will have a free testing clinic for the COVID-19 virus next week, Wednesday May 27, from 8:00 a.m. through 6:00 p.m. The testing is being offered through a partnership with the McCreary County Fiscal Court, the Lake Cumberland Health Department and the South Fork Medical Clinic.
Testing will be set up on Medical Lane by the South Fork Medical and the McCreary County Health Department. Citizens can show up on the day of testing, or call ahead to schedule a time. The tests will be free of charge to citizens of McCreary County. Test results can be expected between 48 to 72 hours after taking the test.
As the COVID-19 virus continues to spread, Kentucky, among many other states are lessening restrictions, allowing more and more businesses and other facilities to re-open to the public.
This Friday sees the expiration of the travel ban enacted by Governor Andy Beshear, as well as the date restaurants can re-open their dining areas, but will be limited to maintaining 33-percent capacity for the time being. Other openings scheduled include movie theaters and fitness centers on June 1, campgrounds on June 11, and child care centers on June 15. The child care facilities must operate at reduced capacity.
On Wednesday of this week retail and houses of worship were allowed to re-open in a limited capacity. On May 25 social gatherings of no more than 10 people will be allowed as well as barbers, salons, cosmetology businesses and similar services can open while following strict guidelines.
With the openings the Governor continues to urge caution when going out in public and all businesses should follow the 10 rules of staying healthy at work as well as industry-specific guidance issued by the Governor’s Office.
Phase 3 of the governor’s plan for re-opening the state’s economy is slated for July 1, with allocations for bars to open (with limitations) and allowing for gatherings of up to 50 people.
After the reveal of two new cases early last week, McCreary County is once again case-free as both patients were released from self-isolation by last Wednesday. No new cases have been reported in the last 7 days, leaving McCreary County with a total of 13 cases overall, and no deaths reported from the virus locally.
The 10-counties covered by the Lake Cumberland District Health Department has seen a significant drop off in active cases, with 17 reported Wednesday morning. Of those cases four are hospitalized and the remaining 13 are self -isolated. A good portion of the active cases in the district are still located in Adair County, where an outbreak occurred in a nursing home.
The District reported one new death Wednesday, bringing the total number of deaths to 23. The latest death was an 83-year-old woman from Adair County, one of the individuals from the nursing home. LCDHD reported the woman had recovered from the virus, but later succumbed to lasting complications caused by the virus. The LCDHD reports a total of 207 cases of COVID-19 since the outbreak.
Kentucky’s overall positive cases grew by over 1,200 since last week, bringing the total to 8,069 with 366 deaths associated with the virus. State data shows 2,826 patients have recovered, indicating there are still about 5,200 active cases in the state.
Across the United States there are over 1.5 million total cases, with nearly 20,000 new cases being reported Tuesday. The death total in the U.S. has grown to over 92,000, with 1,425 new deaths reported Tuesday as well.