GLASGOW — Gov. Andy Beshear announced 21 new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Kentucky on Monday evening, bringing the state’s total to 124.
Allen County has its first confirmed case and Warren County has an additional case, Beshear said. Simpson County also has a confirmed COVID-19 case.
While no confirmed cases were announced in Barren County, Beshear cautioned the public to remain vigilant regardless of what the numbers may show for a particular community.
“Just because there isn’t a positive confirmation in your county doesn’t mean that it’s not in your county,” he said, as Beshear stressed that there may be people without symptoms who are carrying COVID-19 and could infect others.
In announcing the new cases, Beshear said increases are to be expected as the state, like the rest of the nation, battles a pandemic that had resulted in more than 33,000 cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. as of Monday evening.
Kentucky Department for Public Health Commissioner, Dr. Steven Steck, said the potential for the spread of COVID-19 is why it’s “incredibly important” to follow the guidance of medical experts and government leaders as they issue warnings and guidance related to the coronavirus.
“This is the time where we all have to step up and prove that we can do this,” Steck said.
On Sunday, Beshear ordered all non-essential retail businesses to close by Monday night. Businesses affected by the order include sporting goods shops, clothing stores, jewelry stores, florists and book stores.
Auto dealerships also must close but can still conduct business online or through phone sales. Beshear said auto repair services can remain open at dealerships.
Groceries, pharmacies and pet supplies stores can remain open. Agriculture supplies and equipments stores also aren’t affected by the order.
Beshear emphasized grocery stores will not be closed regardless of what happens and that people should shop for one week’s worth of supplies instead of buying enough food to last a month.
“No matter what, your grocery store will be open and you’ll be able to get the supplies you need,” Beshear said.
No major new orders or directives were issued for Kentucky on Monday, but Beshear reminded the public to continue to follow social distancing recommendations.
Additional law enforcement, which could include the National Guard, will be utilized at hospitals “just to make sure everybody is orderly” as medical care facilities begin seeing increased visits due to the pandemic, Beshear said.
He added that he’s “planning and I am pushing” to get more widespread testing for Kentucky.