W.Va. COVID-19 cases continue decline

CHARLESTON — Total and active COVID-19 cases in West Virginia are on the decline for the second straight week, according to an analysis of data released Monday by the state Department of Health and Human Resources.

The total numbers of positive COVID-19 cases over a 14-day period between Jan. 11 and Sunday was 13,201, a 37 percent decrease compared to 21,072 cases during the previous 14-day period between Dec. 28. through Jan. 10.

As of Monday, the most recent data available, the state reported 532 new cases received in a 24-hour period compared to Sunday’s data. The state averaged 784 cases per day over a seven-day period, down from 1,069 cases the previous seven days.

Active COVID-19 cases, the number of infected people in self-quarantine or hospitalized, was 24,365 cases as of Monday, a 9 percent decrease from 26,777 active cases seven days ago. All 55 counties have active cases for the 14th week in a row. Active cases have decreased in 40 out of 55 counties over the last seven days.

West Virginia’s Rt number, the rate that shows how quickly the virus is spreading in the community, was 0.83 as of Monday, down from 0.85 last week. The state’s Rt number remained the best rate in the nation for the second week in a row. Any Rt value below 1 means the growth of the virus is slowing, while numbers above 1 mean the virus is spreading.

There were 597 hospitalizations as of Monday, down from 643 hospitalizations the previous week, a 7 percent decrease. The average number of hospitalizations between Jan. 11 and Sunday decreased by 15 percent over the average number of hospitalizations the previous 14 days. The number of infected people in intensive care units was 151, down from 172 last week, and 63 people are on ventilators, down from 91 last week.

COVID-19 testing was only slightly down compared to last week’s data. The number of test results between Jan. 11 and Sunday was 189,365, a 4 percent increase in testing compared to 197,666 test results between Dec. 28. through Jan. 10. Over the last seven days, the state conducted an average of 11,638 tests per day, down from 15,432 tests per day the previous week.

On the state’s County Alert System map, 15 of 55 counties were listed as red due to either higher infection rates or percent positivity, meaning high schools in those counties will have to go to remote learning until they move out of the red on the map.

Tucker County was green for having the lowest percent of positivity in the state, though its infection rate was in the red. Lewis and Mercer counties were yellow, while seven counties are gold and 30 counties are orange. Pre-K, elementary, and middle schools can open for in-person learning regardless of map color or switch of a blended/hybrid model.

The state reported 1,899 COVID-19 deaths as of Monday. The state reported 313 deaths between Jan. 11 and Sunday, a 5 percent decrease from the 328 deaths reported the previous 14 days. Over a seven-day period, the state saw an average of 16 deaths per day.


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