Louisville’s COVID Cases Dip Dramatically But Weather May Be The Cause

COVID case numbers and new vaccinations both dropped last week in Louisville, following a statewide trend, according to the city’s newest data report — something local health officials think is due to recent inclement weather.  

While the city’s current COVID case numbers remain about double the peak of any previous surge, the Feb. 5 weekly report confirmed 6,250 new cases from the previous week, a significant drop from the Jan. 29 report that had around 12,300 new cases. 

The number of people who received the first dose of the vaccine dropped from around 2,800 during the week covered by the Jan. 29 report to around 1,700 on the Feb. 5 report. During that same timeframe, 2,400 people received their second dose during the week covered by the Jan. 29 report, with a drop to 1,900 on the most recent report. 

Booster shots administered dropped from around 4,100 to 2,200. About 43.6% of Louisville has received a booster shot so far. There were also 48 newly reported deaths last week. 

Dr. Sarah Moyer said that the recent snow and ice played a part in why vaccine and case metrics both went down.

“I think it decreased both,” Moyer said. “So, for case counts, that’s helpful — less interactions, people staying home, it means less disease spread. But it also means people weren’t leaving the house and getting vaccinated. Hopefully the vaccine numbers rebound this week and people go back out and get their vaccines, but those case counts continue to trend down, would be my hope. But, most likely, we won’t have that continued trend down. It might start to plateau out a little bit, and a slower taper off, going forward.” 

The state numbers are also following a similar pattern, with Gov. Andy Beshear announcing a 23.51% positivity rate on Monday, which he called “still really high,” but down significantly from when Kentucky crossed 33% two weeks ago. He also announced a large drop in COVID cases. He said the state reported 46,630 last week, down significantly from January’s peak of 81,473 in a single week. But he still urged caution, because the 46,630 cases reported last week still make it the fifth highest week since the beginning of the pandemic. The governor mentioned the weather as a factor. He also said that vaccinations were “slowing down” statewide.

“For the most part, we have good news today,”  Beshear said on Monday. “Cases are significantly, if not rapidly, declining. Though we do believe that the weather — and a lot of things closing for a number of days last week and into the weekend — did have an impact, that may make the drop in cases look a little bit larger than what it would otherwise be. But, regardless, we are now moving in the right direction.” 

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