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Kentucky up to 14,363 cases of COVID-19, 538 deaths

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Posted at 4:10 PM, Jun 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-24 21:57:34-04

FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — Gov. Andy Beshear announced during his Wednesday press conference that there are 229 new cases of COVID-19 in the state of Kentucky.

Gov. Beshear also announced one new coronavirus-related death, an 89-year-old man in Laurel County, bringing Kentucky's coronavirus-related death total to 538.

Cases stemming from Myrtle Beach

Gov. Beshear and Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Public Health Dr. Steven Stack noted that a group of 12 Kentuckians recently traveled to Myrtle Beach. After returning home, nine of those 12 Kentuckians tested positive for COVID-19. The group left for Myrtle Beach on June 11 and returned to Kentucky three days later.

Myrtle Beach opened their hotels on May 15 and it only took a couple weeks to see case numbers increase in Horry County, where Myrtle Beach is located. On June 11, the mayor of Myrtle Beach declared a state of emergency.

"It took less than four weeks before they went from reopening to declaring a state of emergency," Dr. Stack noted.

Settlement provides $383 million to Kentucky's rural hospitals.

Gov. Beshear announced that a settlement has been finalized that is going to provide $383 million to Kentucky's rural hospitals.

"Health Care is a basic human right and rural hospitals have been having significant difficulty long before COVID-19 in our current health care system," Gov. Beshear said. "The expansions of medicaid in Kentucky has kept many of them (rural hospitals) open while other states have seen them shuttered, but it hasn't eliminated the true hardships that are there."

Gov. Beshear noted that the settlement is about a lawsuit that goes back 13 years.

"When I came into office, the Bevin Administration had left a budget that said we were going to have to pay $425 million dollars in state funds over three years," Gov. Beshear said. "We were able to settle it with the state's liability being only 93.9 million with the rest of that settlement coming from the federal government. We're going to be able to do it all over a matter of months providing much needed dollars to our health care system at a time when it is needed most."