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Beshear Reports Additional COVID-19 Deaths Found In Kentucky Audit

A Kentucky home displays green lights in memory of those lost to COVID-19.
A Kentucky home displays green lights in memory of those lost to COVID-19.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said Tuesday that more coronavirus deaths were found in the state's audit of fatalities during the pandemic.

Beshear said an additional 260 people died due to COVID-19 between March and October of 2020 than earlier records indicated. 

“That's 220 days. So it's going back in the midst of this pandemic and finding about 1.8 Kentuckians in each of those days that we lost, that hadn't been included, hadn't been recognized,” Beshear said. 

Of those deaths, 96 occurred in Jefferson County. 

The audit results put the state’s total COVID-19 death toll at 7,067. That’s still lower than the total provisional death count in the state according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which puts the state’s death toll at more than 7,300.

In February, WFPL reported that local health department death counts were higher than the state’s count. An analysis found that in late January, health departments reported 23% more deaths than the state. 

Beshear said the audit is complete.

“Even with this addition, our mortality rate does not change, it's about 1.5%, compared to a much higher national average of 1.8%,” he said.  

Beshear announced 137 new coronavirus cases and one new death on Tuesday. Kentucky’s positivity rate is 2.5%. About 57% of the state’s adult population has been vaccinated. 

Beshear said senior centers will reopen at full capacity on June 11 and he will also hold his last regular coronavirus update on June 11. 


Jeff Young is managing editor of the Ohio Valley ReSource, a journalism collaboration led by Louisville Public Media.

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