FRANKFORT, KY — Gov. Andy Beshear reported 778 new COVID-19 cases in Kentucky on Friday, as well as four new deaths connected to the illness. The governor said 23 of Friday's cases are children ages 5 and under. 

While Beshear acknowledged in a video message that Friday's case number is high, he said "at the same time, our positivity rate has decreased for the third straight day. That's good news. It's at 5.43%, and it appears that we are going to ultimately end the week with a couple more days at around the same number of cases that we had last week." 

Beshear said that is "relatively good news," that would mean the state is stopping the recent escalation in cases. "But at the same time, we still have too many cases and need to do everything we can to decrease them," Beshear said. 

Kentucky is also seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases in intensive care units, Beshear said, reaching 150 on Friday. Those patients are among 597 Kentuckians currently hospitalized because of the potentially deadly disease. 

To date, 30,151 Kentuckians have tested positive for COVID-19, including 735 deaths. 

The four deaths reported Friday include a 75-year-old man from Fayette County, an 86-year-old woman from Jefferson County, a 63-year-old man from Perry County and an 80-year-old woman from Taylor County.

Beshear delivered Friday's video message while wearing a cloth mask, asking Kentuckians to "mask up." 

"From the data that we are seeing, it is working. It is protecting our fellow human being, and its gonna make sure that we don't become what we have seen in some other states," Beshear said. The governor said the health and safety of Kentuckians, the recovery of the state's economy and the ability for kids to return to school depends on residents wearing masks, practicing social distancing and frequently washing their hands.