COVID-19

Fons Cervera

Warren County Public schools will continue with a hybrid schedule of classes through the end of the calendar year. 

The decision is based, in part, on the state’s new system that tracks the number of coronavirus cases in K-12 schools. 

Under the state’s new metric for reopening schools to in-person classes, Warren County is in the Red category, meaning a daily rate of 25 individuals per 100,000 have a confirmed case of COVID-19. 

Gov. Andy Beshear is recommending any county in the Red category postpone all in-person learning until it reaches Yellow status, meaning less than ten confirmed cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 individuals. 

J.C. Kirby and Son Funeral Home

Funeral services are set for Bowling Green’s top infectious disease expert. Dr. Rebecca Shadowen passed away on Friday at the age of 62 following a four-month battle with COVID-19. 

According to her obituary, a walk-through visitation will be held from 4:00 p.m-9:00 p.m. at J.C. Kirby and Son Lovers Lane Chapel.  A private funeral service for family will be held at 1:00 p.m on Thursday, with burial to follow in Bowling Green Gardens.  The family requests all attendees wear masks and maintain social distancing to avoid the further spread of the coronavirus.

Flickr/Creative Commons/Jeremy W. Osborne

The deadline to fill out the 2020 U.S. Census form is Sept. 30. That means counties like Warren are stepping up their door-to-door efforts to count every resident.

In the spring, the bureau started sending out surveys through the mail. As of Monday, 67.6% of Kentucky households had completed the census form on their own.

In Warren County, that estimated number is only 66.4% of estimated households. It's a number the Bowling Green-Warren County Complete Count Committee would like to see move higher.


Centers for Disease Control & Prevention

The KyCOVID-19 website now includes a “K-12 Public Health Report” that lists schools across the state and the number of cases of the virus reported among students and staff. 

The"K-12 Public Health Report" is divided into two sections. The first is the number of cases in each of 99 school districts. 

The latest numbers show that Barren County Schools have had a total of 12 students and 2 staff with confirmed cases of COVID-19. 

Bowling Green Independent Schools have had 11 cases among students and 2 among staff. 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A Southern Kentucky physician is concerned that fears surrounding the coronavirus will prevent some people from getting a flu vaccine this season.  Dr. William Moss, Director of Emergency Services with The Medical Center in  Bowling Green, said a flu shot this year is even more important to avoid what some are calling a "twindemic".

"Probably this year more than any year ever in the past, you should be getting a flu shot, simply to protect yourself from the influenza virus. You don't need to have any other illnesses that could compound the diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19," Dr. Moss said. 

Dr. Moss said those with allergies to vaccines and with children under the age of six should consult their physicians for guidance on flu vaccines. The flu season in the United States begins in September and can run through March.

Lisa Autry

As colleges across Kentucky and the nation are back underway with in-person classes, students, parents and employees have multiple ways to get updates on COVID-19 cases on campus.

Technology has encouraged transparency in the time of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Kentucky Department for Public Health online dashboard lists COVID-19 cases at colleges and universities across the state. The cases listed as of Aug. 27 include 550 students and 42 staff. 

Western Kentucky University reported 86 new cases in its weekly update posted Aug. 28 on its online dashboard. The total number of cases at the university since July 1 is 299, including students, faculty, staff and on-campus contractors.


The National Quilt Museum

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically reduced the number of visitors to popular tourism destinations in Kentucky, and across the nation. Since the shutdown of most Kentucky businesses and cultural sites in mid-March, and the gradual reopening, museums are among those that have been hit the hardest.  

In the first of a two-part series, WKU Public Radio reporter Rhonda Miller talked with Frank Bennett,  CEO of The National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky, about how museums are maintaining a presence during this time of limited tourism.

Bennett is also a consultant to other museums, and has a blog called worldclassmuseum.com

During the conversation, Bennett said the museum follows all the safety guidelines required during the pandemic. He added that Kentucky’s statewide mandate to wear masks has made it easier to keep visitors safe when they come to the National Quilt Museum.

Lake Cumberland District Health Department/Facebook

The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing caregivers to make some touch decisions about how to help their loved ones.  Elizabeth Downing, with Timesavers, a non-medical in-home healthcre provider in Bowling Green, recommends families prepare a healthcare roadmap.

"Know your trusted advisors, your trusted professionals.  Know who to go to, who can tie you in to all those things, and help you navigate.  It's a path that is ever changing and having some kind of plan to start is just, to me, the most imporatnt thing you can have," she said.

Downing says fears of contracting the coronavirus are leading to more people choosing in-home healthcare over rehabilitation and skilled nursing facilities.

Mackenzie Kristufek

As Kentucky busiesses and schools reopen, with strict health guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19, a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University said she knows from personal experience that young people are not immune to the coronavirus. 

MacKenzie Kristufek turned around on her way to her temporary job at the end of March because she didn’t feel well. The symptoms of COVID-19 worsened as the day went on with a sore throat, back pain, fever, a headache and difficulty breathing. 

She tested positive for COVID-19 and went into a two-week quarantine. Her boyfriend’s parents helped her get through it. 

Dr. Belinda Setters

The Robley Rex VA Medical Center in Louisville provides specialty geriatric care for military veterans 65 and older.

WKU Public Radio reporter Rhonda Miller talked with Director of Inpatient Geriatrics, Dr. Belinda Setters, who says the VA hospital has increased efforts to keep patients active and connected and avoid the negative impacts of isolation, while most visiting is suspended during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Setters:

So, we take care of the frailest, the oldest folks when they're hospitalized. We actually see patients on all different units, including in the ICU, including in the COVID unit, you know, working in different ways to try to keep the patients engaged and as active as we can, which has been problematic with COVID. 

Warren County Public Schools

Two new therapy dogs will be waiting for Warren County Public Schools students who are returning this fall. 

The addition is among the latest steps to better serve children's mental health needs ater the school received a federal grant last year.

Todd Hazel is director of student services for WCPS, and a caretaker for one of the new labradoodles. He said dogs have a unique way of helping students.

"In schools for over 20 years, I've seen how well dogs interact with students. And you can take a child who's going through a crisis that may not want to talk to an adult, or have anything to do with an adult. But you can bring a dog in, and it's amazing how quick that child can open up," Hazel said.

Tom Morris

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused widespread anxiety about what used to be common daily activities, like going to the grocery store and getting a haircut.

Now, Bowling Green area residents are using social media to share information about businesses that are using safety precautions, and others that are not following guidelines for masks or social distancing.

The public Facebook group is called 'Safe Places to Patronize in Bowling Green, KY.'

Retired engineer Tom Morris, who created the group,  said it’s grown to more than 2,500 members in two months.

“Actually, it kind of started on a whim," said Morris. "Somebody had posted something about, you know, it would be nice to know where we can go that’s safe. And I said, ‘Well somebody ought to start a Facebook group about safe places to patronize, you know.’ And I said, ‘Well, heck, I’ll start it'."


Becca Schimmel

Businesses in Kentucky and throughout the country continue to walk a fine line when it comes to welcoming customers, while also enforcing state and local coronavirus guidelines such as the wearing of face masks.

 

New restrictions and requirements at the Community Farmers Market in Bowling Green so far haven’t hurt direct-to-consumer sales. On a recent weekday, vendors could be seen from the road wearing masks and talking to customers about their fresh fruits and vegetables. 

 

Many of the stands would normally be inside, but because of the pandemic, tents have been set up outside to spread people around and encourage social distancing. Nathan Howell is a co-founder of the Bowling Green Community Farmer’s Market and a vendor with Need More Acres farm in Scottsville.  


Dr. Laura Morton

Visiting at nursing homes across Kentucky began July 15, after in-person visits were suspended for several months to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Residents had been keeping in touch with family and friends through social media and by peering through windows. 

Now, visits to skilled nursing facilities have restarted, with many state required health precautions in place, including social distancing and the wearing of masks. 

Restrictions were eased on other types of long-term care facilities, including assisted living and personal care homes, on June 29.


Kyeland Jackson

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron has filed a motion to suspend executive orders designed to protect the public from the global pandemic currently ravaging the country, and on the rise in the Commonwealth.

In a motion filed Wednesday, Cameron asked the Boone County Circuit Court to issue a temporary injunction nullifying the governor’s orders. Cameron makes numerous claims in the filing, arguing Gov. Andy Beshear’s orders exceed his authority as governor, violate the state Constitution and are unequally applied among Kentucky residents.

Beshear responded in a tweet, saying: “With no rules, there is no chance of getting kids back to school, we will lose over $10 billion in our economy and many Kentuckians will die. I hope everyone understands how scary and reckless this is.”

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