Gov. Beshear: Pfizer emergency use authorization for 12 to 15-year-olds could ‘set a timeline for 100 percent capacity’

Published: May. 10, 2021 at 11:24 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WAVE) - Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear provided an update Monday on the commonwealth’s continued vaccine rollout and efforts to prevent COVID-19 spread.

Beshear announced that in week-by-week reports, last week’s COVID numbers are down from the previous week, saying the commonwealth’s cases are still within a plateau.

There were 8,517 vaccinations between Sunday and Monday. As of Monday afternoon, 1,875,554 Kentuckians have received at least one dose of the COVID vaccine.

Beshear also announced that once the Pfizer vaccine gets FDA emergency use authorization for 12 to 15-year-olds, the commonwealth may have a timeline to open back up to 100 percent capacity. The vaccine ended up getting authorization about an hour after Beshear’s press conference ended.

“Once we know when that is going to occur, we believe that we’re going to be able to set a timeline for 100 percent capacity, certainly in events, venues, businesses, et cetera with under a thousand people,” Beshear said. “What we want to do is give time for this age group to get vaccinated because they are certainly out and about in those type of activities.”

The Team Kentucky COVID-19 website is also working with the CDC to provide a map of locations for parents to find vaccination sites offering the Pfizer vaccine, currently in emergency use authorization for ages 16 and up.

Last week, Beshear announced that capacity for venues with 1,000 people or less would be increased to 75 percent on May 28, as well as curfews for bars and restaurants ending on that date. Bar seating will be allowed again as well on that date.

Healthy at Work guidance will be updated next week, providing flexibility for social distancing also starting May 28.

“We’re going to continue to be loosening these restrictions, but be reasonable,” Beshear said. “Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Look at your own facilities, look at the ability for air to move in and out, look at what you’re vaccination rates are in your county and what your incident rates are, and make good decisions.”

Monday’s update confirmed 167 additional cases of COVID-19 in the commonwealth, bringing the total number of cases since the pandemic began to 449,107.

Nine additional deaths due to COVID-19 were confirmed by the health department, as well as two additional deaths confirmed from the state audit. The total number of deaths due to the virus in the commonwealth is now 6,597.

The state positivity rate based on a seven-day rolling average is now 3.25 percent.

Other information provided in Monday’s update includes:

  • Patients currently hospitalized: 404
  • Patients currently in ICU: 109
  • Patients currently on a ventilator: 51
  • Long-term care facilities: 1 new resident case, 7 new staff cases, 2 new deaths

To find a regional vaccination location, click here. Other sites include those set up through partnerships with Kroger, Walmart, Walgreens and other local businesses and pharmacies:

To find out who falls under each vaccine phase, click here. Individuals who want to know if they qualify for the vaccine can click here to fill out a survey or call (855) 598-2246.

The Kentucky COVID-19 Hotline can help with all other vaccine questions at (800) 722-5725.

For additional information on COVID-19 in the commonwealth, visit the Team Kentucky COVID-19 website.

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