Gov. Beshear: FEMA strike teams, Ky. National Guard to help state’s hospitals with surge of COVID-19 cases

Published: Sep. 1, 2021 at 6:14 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 2, 2021 at 11:35 AM CDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (KFVS) - Governor Andy Beshear gave a Team Kentucky update on Thursday, September 2.

During the briefing, the governor said Federal Emergency Management Agency strike teams and Kentucky National Guard members were helping Kentucky hospitals in need during the surge of COVID-19 cases.

“With hospital staff and resources stretched thin, we need this additional help, and we thank all those serving on the front lines,” said Governor Beshear.

He said three FEMA EMS strike teams were in Kentucky to help transfer and transport COVID-19 patients. The EMS strike teams are being managed by the Kentucky Board of Emergency Management Services through American Medical Response.

Each team is comprised of five advanced life support ambulances and each ambulance is staffed with one paramedic and one emergency medical technician. Each team was placed regionally in Somerset, Prestonburg and Louisville.

Governor Beshear said a resource request will be submitted soon to FEMA seeking two monoclonal COVID-19 antibody injection teams to give antibodies subcutaneously to Kentuckians infected with the virus.

He said two long-term care nurse strike teams are in development by the Kentucky Department for Public Health’s Healthcare-Associated Infections program.

In total, the governor said 105 Kentucky National Guardsmen have been deployed for a new COVID-19 response mission, in seven teams of 15.

So far, hospitals that have received Kentucky National Guard assistance include: St. Claire Regional Medical Center in Morehead, Appalachian Regional Healthcare in Hazard, The Medical Center at Bowling Green and Pikeville Medical Center.

Cases of COVID-19 in Kentucky

The Kentucky Department for Public Health reported 4,941 new cases of the virus and 12 additional deaths on Wednesday.

The positivity rate was 13.35 percent.

KDPH reported 2,267 COVID-19 patients in the hospital in the state. Of those, 644 were in the ICU and 410 were on ventilators.

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