LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - It was just last week that national health leaders were sounding the alarm about Kentucky.
"This current group of states: Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia, tomorrow, are the next set of states where we have significant concerns about the rising test positivity rate and the rising number of cases," Dr. Deborah Birx said.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, this week, repeating concerns about the virus growing in regions north of the sunbelt, but not naming states specifically.
That as a key indicator of COVID-19's grasp on the commonwealth provided some good news Monday.
“The positivity rate today is 5.18 percent,” Governor Andy Beshear said during a coronavirus briefing. “5.18 percent is down significantly from even a little less than a week ago.”
Those at UofL Health said statistics like the positivity rate help us understand how the virus is spreading - and can impact the number of people hospitalized.
“It becomes a simple numbers game,” Dr. Jason Smith, the Chief Medical Officer at UofL Health, said. “The more cases you have running around, the bigger the chance you’re going to have someone effected by this more severely or someone whose got an immune system that can’t tolerate this being effected by this disease.”
Smith said UofL Health is currently seeing around an 8 percent positivity rate, which is still up significantly since June.
UofL Health announced it’d be expanding testing this week. Smith said anybody with concerns can call (502) 588-0414 to schedule an appointment.
Three UofL Health drive-thru sites will begin seeing patients seven days a week, starting Thursday.
- Downtown Louisville – 499 S. Brook Street
- South Louisville – Mary & Elizabeth Hospital, 1850 Bluegrass Avenue
- Bullitt County – Medical Center South, 1903 W. Hebron Lane
UofL Health leaders hope to eventually test a thousand people a day. People will have to call to sign up for an appointment.
"From our standpoint, having the opportunity to work on a larger scale than we were previously, has really been one of the things we were really pushing for," Smith said. "Not just for our own system, to make sure we were getting out there, but also for the community."
Governor Beshear said Monday the growth of cases by week statewide is slowing, which is something he attributes to a mask mandate put in effect early July.
He said federal health officials have noted the slowing of cases as well.
"They are seeing their positivity rate for us go down as well," Beshear said. "They are like us hopeful. We were thanked on the call for what they described as leaning in taking the steps they recommended."
Beshear said Monday they added Kentucky appears to be headed in the right direction.
To find a testing location, click or tap here.