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COVID-19 case numbers going back up in West Virginia

CHARLESTON — West Virginia is seeing an increase in COVID-19 total and active cases as the state marks the grim milestone of the first coronavirus death in the state one year ago.

According to data from the Department of Health and Human Resources, the number of positive cases over a 14-day period between March 15 and March 28 was 5,298, which was a 38-percent increase compared to 3,844 cases between March 1 through March. 14.

As of Monday, the most recent data available, the state reported 378 new cases received in a 24-hour period compared to Sunday’s data. The state averaged 412 cases per day over a seven-day period, up from 347 cases the previous seven days.

Active COVID-19 cases, the number of infected people in self-quarantine or hospitalized, was 6,252 cases as of Monday, a 12 percent increase from 5,600 active cases seven days ago. All 55 counties have active cases for the 23rd week in a row. Active cases have increased in 31 out of 55 counties over the last seven days.

West Virginia has fully vaccinated more than 17 percent of the state’s 1.79 million residents against COVID-19 since the first doses arrived last December, while more than 27 percent of residents have at least one shot. The state receives weekly shipments of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, both of which require two doses, as well as the single-dose Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

The state reported 2,638 total COVID-19 deaths as of Monday. There were 84 deaths reported between March 15 and March 28, a 29 percent increase from the 65 deaths reported the previous 14 days. Over a seven-day period, the state saw an average of four deaths per day, down from nine deaths per day last week. Monday marked one year since the first COVID-19 was reported on March 29, 2020.

There were 222 hospitalizations as of Friday, the most recent data available, up from 198 hospitalizations the previous week, a 12 percent increase. The average number of hospitalizations over a 14-day period increased by 3 percent over the average number of hospitalizations the previous 14 days. The number of infected people in intensive care units was 83, up from 67 last week and 18 people are on ventilators, down from 21 last week.

The total number of tests between March 15 and March 28 was 128,547, a 7 percent increase in testing compared to 120,078 tests over the previous 14-day period. Over the last seven days, the state conducted an average of 9,307 tests per day, up from 9,044 tests per day the previous week.

Berkeley and Raleigh counties were the only red counties on the County Alert System map Monday. Last week, Justice announced that county school systems would no longer use the color-coded map for determining whether high schools needed to close for in-person learning. Counties listed as red either have higher infection rates or high percent of positivity.

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