Coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx and Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear told reporters on Sunday that the federal and state government agree on measures needed to slow the rate of Covid-19 infections in the state.
While Kentucky is currently a yellow zone, it has the potential to slip into the red zone, Birx said.
Birx said it appears that the current rise of cases in Kentucky are from residents going on vacation to places like Myrtle Beach and other beach communities and unknowingly bringing back the infection.
"What we have recommended is that 100% of people should be wearing masks in any indoor public space," Birx said. "Frankly, people should be wearing masks if they've been in an area where the virus is significant, if they've gone on vacation and come back, they should wear a mask, indoors, in their homes if they are in a multigenerational household in order to protect our seniors optimally."
In order to maintain infection rates, Birx and the federal government are recommending Kentucky maintain the federal guidance put out in April for reopening.
The state has required face masks for certain public situations since July 10. Other federal guidance includes maintaining social distance, increasing outdoor dining, closing bars and reducing in-person gatherings to less than 10, she said.
Beshear agreed with this guidance, and said the state would make an announcement on Monday regarding the additional steps they intend to take.
The number of people wearing masks has gone up since it was required by the state, Beshear said, but the harder part is encouraging everyone to do it, especially in circumstances where people "let their guard down."
He specifically noted that he just saw a picture of hundreds of people in bars in Lexington, but none of them were wearing masks. He gave no further information on if any enforcement activity was done.
"This spread is very much at the household level, and I think that's why we have a real call to action for every Kentuckian to wear their mask, and to protect those in their families by not going to large social gatherings," Birx said. "And if they do, make sure they are protecting those in their families that have substantial vulnerabilities we know are related to obesity, hypertension, diabetes and chronic lung, heart or kidney disease."