CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The COVID-19 numbers continue to show improvement in West Virginia. There were slightly more that 400 new cases since Thursday, but only one additional death. And for the first time, the number of active cases has dropped below 8-thousand.
“They’re at 78-hundred, that’s fantastic, you know compared absolutely to where we’ve been. That’s 41 straight days in West Virginia that that number has dropped,” said Gov. Jim Justice, (R) West Virginia.
The state is also anticipating 15-thousand new doses from the third vaccine, this one from Johnson and Johnson. Unlike the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, Johnson and Johnson only requires one shot and is more easily transported and stored – a benefit to rural areas. So, the state will initially target people age 65 plus, who still have not been vaccinated.
“It will allow us some flexibility. For example, older individuals who may not be as mobile, who would be easier to get a single shot to,” said Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, (Ret.), Joint Inter-agency COVID Task Force.
Meanwhile there have been glitches reported. A number of people received invitations to be vaccinated at Walgreen’s locations, only to find out there is no vaccine for them when they arrive.
“Please call the toll-free line if you have a problem. We have a system in place that tries to track everyone of those issues down, and makes sure everyone gets their vaccines. So we’ll run everyone of those down,” said Secretary Bill Crouch, DHHR. (Call toll free: 1-833-734-0965).
All told, the state believes it will be able to vaccinate 60 thousand more people next week, the largest number yet.
“As of today 267 West Virginians are hospitalized with COVID-19. That is the lowest number since November 1st,” said Mark Curtis, 13 News Chief Political Reporter.