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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky officials reported 316 new infections of COVID-19 Saturday, the third-highest daily total this month, and the highest in two weeks.

Gov. Andy Beshear warned that the virus is “not going away yet” and that Kentuckians still have “a long way to go.”

As the number of cases spike in other states, the governor said Kentuckians must remain vigilant.

There’s reason for concern: Kentucky’s cases have been increasing. The state’s seven-day average number of cases now stands at 1,603, the highest since June 9, and up 350 from a week ago.

And, a project that includes researchers from Duke University, lists Kentucky’s status as “trending poorly,” with increasing cases and low availability of intensive care beds. Indiana, according the project, is “making progress.”

Kentucky officials also said that a 78-year-old woman from Fayette County had died from COVID-19, bringing the state’s total to 554. More than 90% of deaths were people older than 60.

“We’ve lost far too many already,” Beshear said. “We must continue to take the steps to protect each other.”

Officials also said that the state has performed nearly 392,000 COVID-19 tests, and that at least 3,730 Kentuckians have recovered, out of nearly 15,200 confirmed cases.

The state said Saturday that 386 people were hospitalized in Kentucky, with 68 being in intensive care.

Nationwide, more than 2.5 million people have contracted the disease, and more than 125,000 have died, according to Johns Hopkins University. Globally, more than 9.9 million people have tested positive for COVID-19, and nearly 500,000 have died.

For most people, the virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness.

To reduce the risk of spreading the disease, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people:

  • Wash their hands often
  • Avoid close contact
  • Cover their mouth and nose with a cloth cover when around others
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Clean and disinfect
  • Monitor their health

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