CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – West Virginia Governor Jim Justice again called on West Virginians to get vaccinated against COVID-19 to reduce the virus spread across the state.
“We’ve got to make some big, big dents in this,” Justice said.
The governor urged residents between 16 and 35 not to wait until the state’s savings bond award is up and running, saying the award would be retroactive for all West Virginians in that age range who have already received the vaccine. He says he is calling on this age group and offering an incentive of the savings bond because they currently have the highest rate of virus spread.
Justice says health experts have said the threshold to beat is approximately 70% of the eligible population vaccinated.
“It could absolutely save your life or a loved one’s life.”West Virginia Governor Jim Justice
As of this morning, health officials had administered a total of 1,242,647 doses. Breaking down that number, the West Virginia Department of Health and Resources website 566,476 West Virginians have been fully vaccinated against the virus and 704,441 have received at least their first dose of the vaccine.
The governor says the number of West Virginians fully vaccinated is equal to nearly one-third of the eligible population. Of the 65 and above population he says approximately 78.5% have been vaccinated.
While Justice says the state is not reporting an issue with West Virginians returning to get their second dose of the vaccine, he said recruiting for people to get the first shot needs improvement. The governor says protecting more people with the vaccine is also important in stopping the virus variants from spreading across the state.
WV COVID-19 Czar Dr. Clay Marsh says the vaccines have been proven safe and severe adverse reactions are extremely rare. He says the effects of feeling unwell after receiving the shot mean the body is reacting very vigorously toward the vaccine, meaning it is working and the immune system will recognize the virus and react should the person be exposed.