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West Virginia officials report five new COVID-related deaths

CHARLESTON — The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources on Friday reported five new COVID-19 deaths, ranging in age from a 40-year-old Kanawha County man to an 81-year-old woman from Mingo County.

That brings the total deaths in the state attributed to the coronavirus since the start of the pandemic to 2,813.

“Every life lost to this pandemic is a tragedy,” said Bill J. Crouch, DHHR cabinet secretary. “Our thoughts go out to the families.”

Wetzel County moved onto the highest alert level, red, based on the rate at which the virus is spreading. It’s one of only three red counties, along with Berkeley and Raleigh, in the state.

Jackson County was at the second-highest level, orange. Wirt County was at the second-lowest, yellow, while the rest of the Mid-Ohio Valley was on the bottom level, green.

Active case totals as of Friday (previous day) in local counties are: Calhoun, 13 (13); Doddridge, 15 (17); Gilmer, 4 (5); Jackson, 72 (65); Pleasants, 15 (16); Ritchie, 17 (17); Roane, 27 (26); Tyler, 18 (21); Wetzel, 100 (89); Wirt, 7 (5); and Wood, 103 (100).

There are 248 West Virginians hospitalized because of COVID-19, with with 76 in intensive care units and 26 on ventilators.

The DHHR’s Friday update showed 694,200 people have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 543,654 are fully vaccinated.

The number of people fully vaccinated in local counties and the percentage of the population are: Calhoun, 1,475, 20.7; Doddridge, 3,133, 37.1; Gilmer, 1,811, 23.1; Jackson, 7,899, 27.6; Pleasants, 2,164, 29; Ritchie, 2,528, 26.5; Roane, 3,618, 26.4; Tyler, 2,093, 24.4; Wetzel, 4,780, 31.7; Wirt, 1,318, 22.6; Wood, 21,832, 26.1.

Residents 16 and older can pre-register for vaccinations at vaccinate.wv.gov or call 833-734-0965. In addition, some vaccine clinics in the region — including today’s from 9 a.m. to noon at the Jackson County Armory, 8832 Point Pleasant Road, Millwood — are accepting walk-ins. People should check with the individual event to determine whether walk-ins are allowed.

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