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Flags to be flown at half-mast to honor 5,016 Kansans who lost their lives to COVID-19
40% of Barton Countians over age 16 have received COVID-19 vaccine
Coronavirus breaking news

In honor of the 5,016 Kansas lives lost to COVID-19 and the families they left behind, Gov. Laura Kelly on Friday directed that flags be lowered to half-mast throughout the state until sundown Sunday, May 9.

“It is with great sadness that I order flags to half-staff to honor the lives and memories of 5,000 Kansans who have died from COVID-19,” Kelly said. “We cannot become numb to the significance of this number. That’s 5,000 mothers and fathers, daughters and sons, loved ones and neighbors who we’ve lost to virus-related deaths. The best way we can honor their memories is by getting vaccinated and continuing to practice the proper health protocol we know protects our communities from the threat of COVID-19.” 

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment on Friday reported 310,582 Kansas have had COVID-19, resulting in 10,374 hospitalizations as well as the 5,016 deaths. There were 467 new cases, 17 new deaths and 62 new hospitalizations reported since Wednesday, May 5.

Here are the total positive and probable cases for area counties as of Friday:

• Barton 2,612 cases (+5 since Monday)

• Ellsworth 1,223 (+1)

• Pawnee 1,166 (+1)

• Rice 1,076 (+2)

• Rush 431

• Russell 857 (-1)

• Stafford 340 (+1)

Barton County had one new death related to COVID-19, bringing the total to 48. There were no new deaths reported in other area counties.


KDHE reported Friday that 40.37% of Barton County residents age 16 or older have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine and 35.24% have completed the vaccine series. Barton County lags behind neighboring counties, with the exception of Rice County, where 40.12% have received one dose and 33.48% have received the full series.

Statewide, 1,140,848 Kansas – 39.2% of the total population (all ages) – have received one dose and 857,780 have received a second dose.