Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear speaks about the novel coronavirus during a news conference at the state Capitol in Frankfort, Ky., Sunday, April 26, 2020. (Ryan C. Hermens/Lexington Herald-Leader via AP)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Gov. Andy Beshear announced 10 more deaths linked to COVID-19 in Kentucky on Wednesday.

That puts the state's death toll related to the respiratory illness at 376.

Beshear said 166 new COVID-19 cases have been identified Wednesday, pushing Kentucky's total to 8,167 since the pandemic began.

Wednesday marked the lowest day for new COVID-19 cases connected to long-term-care facilities with six more patients and six more staff members testing positive for the novel coronavirus, Beshear said, noting that no deaths were reported as well.

The state has pledged to test everyone living and working in such facilities soon, and officials said Wednesday that a signficiant amount of personal protective equipment had been shipped to long-term-care centers.

Beshear said expected shipments from the federal government had been delayed.

"In an attempt to try to help bridge our long-term-care facilities in Kentucky, we are shipping some supplies out to them," said Dr. Steven Stack, Kentucky's public health commissioner. 

Stack said the state had transitioned to a supportive role regarding PPE, directing those supplies to areas that need them most.

"We clearly want to help the long-term-care facilities avoid outbreaks," he said.

Beshear also announced Wednesday that the state will begin distributing $300 million through the federal stimulus starting 8 a.m. Thursday.

Those funds, for which counties and cities must apply, can be used to cover expenses incurred because of the COVID-19 pandemic and will be administered by the Department for Local Government through a population-based formula, he said. 

"They sacrificed to protect others by supplying PPE, enforcing guidelines and keeping the public informed, and I could not be prouder of their work," Beshear said. "There haven't been Democrats or Republicans, just Americans, just leaders that care about their citizens fighting this coronavirus."

Copyright 2020 WDRB Media. All rights reserved.