LOUISVILLE, Ky. — More than 200 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine have gone through UPS.  

Thousands of employees at the Worldport facility in Louisville played a major role in getting many of those out.

“They are essential, and they have performed valiantly over the past year and a half to move our world forward by delivering what matters,” UPS Healthcare Senior Vice President David Quintilio said.

What You Need To Know

  • Gov. Andy Beshear toured UPS Worldport on Tuesday

  • Facility plays a key role in the distribution of coronavirus vaccines

  • Beshear talked about his vaccination goals, says he's flexible with goal of 2.5 million to get restrictions lifted

  • Pace of vaccinations in Kentucky has fallen off recently

Gov. Andy Beshear toured UPS Worldport on Tuesday, taking in what the shipping company does to get the vaccines out.  

“Now that we’re a few months into our rollout, I am happy to be here to see the incredible work done by UPS and all these hardworking Kentuckians that are making it happen,” Beshear said.

Beshear is basing his plan to reopen Kentucky on how many Kentuckians get vaccinated, setting a goal of 2.5 million.

“We know we’ve got two amazing tools right now that’s letting us do things like the Derby: it’s the vaccines and it’s the effectiveness of masks and some of our other steps,” Beshear said. “So we’re committed to doing it right, but we’re also committed to being open-minded as we learn more about the science.”

And being open-minded means possibly amending his plans to ease restrictions on bars, restaurants, or other public gatherings.

Beshear says it depends on how CDC guidance evolves.

“We’re going to be flexible. Just like this virus has made us change plans at different times, we’re going to make sure we’re looking at the science,” Beshear said. “And when more and more people get vaccinated, and we learn that it’s safer for vaccinated people to do things, we want them to have the opportunity to do it.”

The vaccination rate has been dropping in Kentucky, and the state might not hit the 2.5 million mark until late June.

Getting people on board with the vaccines is one challenge; making the vaccine more easily available is another.

“What we’ve got to do now is we’ve got to change our model, and that’s what we’re working on,” Beshear said. “We’re moving from mass vaccination sites to having it in every grocery store, every pharmacy, everywhere people are normally going to go.”

And getting the vaccine, he says, is the easiest way to get things back to normal.