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W.Va. Likely Facing Fifth Coronavirus Surge This Winter

Centers for Disease Control & Prevention

As COVID-19 continues to spread in West Virginia, it will likely put increased pressure on hospitals.

Retired Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, head of the Joint Interagency Task Force, reported during Gov. Jim Justice’s regular coronavirus briefing that the reproduction number of COVID-19 is now 1.04.

That means someone with the virus is spreading it to more than one other person. And hospitals haven’t yet recovered from the delta surge.

At the end of the first surge, we had almost a complete emptying of our hospital system of COVID patients,” Hoyer said. “That is not the case during this surge. We still have over 500 patients in the hospital and a much greater percentage of those individuals in the ICU.”

Gov. Justice began the briefing by reading off the ages and home counties of 92 West Virginians who have died from the coronavirus since his last briefing. He warned that the state is likely facing a fifth surge.

The total number of deaths in West Virginia from COVID 19 has climbed to 4817.

Copyright 2021 West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Eric is a native of Kanawha County and graduated from Marshall University with a degree in Journalism. He has written for newspapers and magazines throughout his career. After completing the certificate program with the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University, he began producing documentaries includingRussia: Coming of Age,For Cheap LobsterandWest Virginia Voices of War.