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Death Toll: It’s not too late to get COVID vaccinations

Earlier this week, the United States surpassed 1 million deaths from COVID-19 since early 2020. That number alone might not be a surprise, but when we learn the majority of those deaths — 614,305 — occurred AFTER the availability of a vaccine, it is more of a shock.

A study by Brown School of Public Health estimated 318,981 of those deaths could have been prevented by vaccination. According to a report by WBOY in Clarksburg, the study showed more than 61 percent — 3,350 — of the COVID-19 deaths in West Virginia could have been prevented if all Mountain State residents had been vaccinated.

In fact, according to the study, increased vaccination rates would have saved a higher percentage of lives here than in any other state.

It’s not too late to make a difference. West Virginians are still dying from this virus, and there are still far too many eligible people unvaccinated (and many who should be getting second shots, boosters, etc.) There are still nearly 2,000 active cases here, in the state with one of the highest populations of high-risk elderly people in the country.

“We do see another surge that is happening, both in the United States and also in West Virginia,” said Dr. Clay Marsh, the state coronavirus czar, Monday. “These mutations allow the virus to escape our immune system more easily.”

For goodness sake, folks, if you’ve been hesitating, the data from the Brown School of Public Health study should be more than enough to convince you of the importance of getting vaccinated — if not for your own sake, then for the sake of those around you.

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