CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — As of today, 226 West Virginian’s are being treated in hospitals across the Mountain State. 83 of them are in Intensive Care Units and 27 are on ventilators. The uptick in hospitalizations is happening nationwide, and doctors here worry that if resources get scarce, they will have to ration care.
“Meaning that they’re deciding perhaps that a group of people might need a certain level of care like an ICU or a ventilator, maybe they can’t serve all the people that need it. That is really a profound moment for us,” said Dr. Clay Marsh, West Virginia COVIS-19 Czar.
Saint Francis Hospital in Charleston has been designated as the surge facility for all of West Virginia. Right now it’s not treating any COVID-19 patients, it can handle as many as 16 initially. Health officials say that could change in the next few weeks as they anticipate a spike in hospitalizations. In preparation for the jump in cases, more than half of West Virginia’s 55 counties are holding free testing today.
“I will promise you, and promise and promise you. That if we in these counties, just get the people out and get tested, these colors and these numbers will change,” said Gov. Jim Justice, (R) West Virginia.
In all, West Virginia logged 358 new positive cases, in just the past day.
“The governor acknowledged today that there was a one-day spike of nearly 500 cases, moving from the active cases, to the recovered cases. He said that was not the result of a medical reason, but rather the clearing of a paperwork backlog in Kanawha County,” said Mark Curtis, 13 News Chief Political Reporter.