LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – For some, the COVID-19 pandemic is beginning to feel like a thing of the past, but a rising number of COVID cases in Kentucky is keeping it in the public eye. The question ‘is covid making a comeback’ has a debatable answer.
Towards the end of April all of Kentucky’s counties were in the green, but Monday’s update shows a lot more red returning. Additionally hospitalizations are also slowly climbing. On May 23, the Kentucky Department of Public Health reported 264 hospitalizations statewide, the following week on June 6: 299. This week on June 13, 352 hospitalizations were reported.
However, health officials said despite this, concerns are low.
“This has been a steady increase over the last number of weeks especially starting in the northeast and now we’re starting to see numbers increase in city centers especially Lexington, Louisville, northern Kentucky, places where there’s a larger number of gatherings,” FOX 56 Chief Medical Contributor Dr. Ryan Stanton said.
Stanton said the public is still dealing with a version of the less dangerous but more contagious variant, Omicron, and is part of the reason why there is an increase.
“First and foremost is honestly just the type of variant out there, how infectious it is and two is the decrease in immunity, the natural immunity and vaccinated immunity is waning over time.”
Lexington’s health department is also reporting a slight increase, but a spokesperson said it is “nothing dramatic.” The department does expect to continue seeing a rise in hospitalizations.
“We’ve ended up admitting a couple to the hospital but we’re not seeing a huge threat on the healthcare system at this point,” Stanton said.
Stanton said one of the bigger concerns now for people is long term damage left on their lungs from Covid, especially if they had it early in the pandemic. He said this is causing a rise in secondary infections like RSV or flu. Washing hands, masking up, and social distancing are still best practices to help control the spread of infection.