HUNTINGTON, WV (WOWK) – With COVID-19 numbers on the rise across the Mountain State and the CDC labeling all West Virginia counties as having high transmission rates of COVID-19, the Cabell-Huntington Health Department is issuing an advisory to get residents to help “Shorten the Surge.”
The CHHD says they anticipate the growing number of cases to continue rising in the next two weeks, similar to the range of new infections seen this past January, which they say could result in “some serious illness and death.” Not only are the numbers of infections increasing, but COVID-19 related hospital and ICU admissions and the number of patients on ventilators are also continuing to increase.
Health officials say COVID-19 cases reported in August have ranged from residents younger than 1-year-old to over 90-years-old. They say they also say about for about one in six of these cases the individual has either been partially vaccinated or is a breakthrough case, meaning they were fully vaccinated.
“The Delta Variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus is the dominant circulating strain causing more than 90% of recent infections in WV. Reports indicate that severely ill patients in local hospitals are much more likely to be unvaccinated than all reported cases, consistent with recently published reports regarding the protective qualities of COVID vaccination,” the CHHD said.
As of Friday, Aug. 20, the CHHD says they have received preliminary data from the West Virginia Department, Bureau for Public Health reporting a total of 9,853 COVID-19 cases throughout the pandemic, 8,237 of which are confirmed and 1,616 are probable.
The county currently has 618 active cases and, over the course of the pandemic, 186 Cabell County residents have died in connection to the virus.
Health officials are advising Cabell County residents of this recent surge to help them stay informed so they can make appropriate decisions to protect themselves and others against COVID-19 infection.
CHHD is asking residents to help “Shorten the Surge” by taking the following steps:
- Get vaccinated if not vaccinated and complete your vaccination series to become fully vaccinated. They say those who have specific immune deficiencies are also able to receive a third dose to increase the likelihood of vaccine protection.
- Mask up in all indoor public spaces, whether you are vaccinated or not, until the surge is over and the risk decreases. Consider also masking in crowded outdoor spaces.
- Maintain distance at all times as much as possible in public spaces.
- Use contactless or contact lowering services as much as possible.
- Continue to wash hands and sanitize surfaces frequently.
- Get tested for COVID if you develop any symptoms or have been exposed to someone who is infectedwith COVID.
- Participate in any COVID testing screening available at your school or work.
For more information on COVID-19 in Cabell County or on vaccinations, visit cabellhealth.org or call the COVID-19 hotline at (304) 526-3383.