FRANKFORT, KY (WOWK) – Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear is giving a Team Kentucky update in the Bluegrass State at approximately 12:30 p.m. following last night’s State of the Commonwealth address.

During Monday’s Team Kentucky update, the governor said the omicron variant of COVID-19 has brought the state to its worst escalation of reported cases since the start of the pandemic. He also added that the number of new cases reported last week, 29,955 new cases, is twice the number of new cases reported the week prior.

Monday, Beshear said the state has never seen an escalation as large as the one they are seeing right now with omicron. The last week of 2021’s total is also the second-highest week of new cases reported since the start of the pandemic, following only the week of Aug. 30, when the Delta variant was at its peak.

Beshear also said Monday the state had reported its highest-ever daily positivity rate at 20.72%%. As of the state’s most recent COVID-19 update Wednesday, Jan. 5, that rate has now increased to 22.89%. Health officials also say 117 of the state’s 120 counties are currently red on the current incidence rate map.

Wednesday, the Kentucky Department for Public Health reported 9,807 new COVID-19 cases and 29 additional deaths. The report brings the state to a total of 895,370 cases and 12,284 deaths since the pandemic began. As of Wednesday, Jan. 5, health officials say a total of 1,704 Kentuckians are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 with 394 of those patients in the ICU and 211 on ventilators.