The unprecedented rise in COVID-19 infection rates continues across West Virginia. The DHHR reported that 953 new cases of the virus were identified on Tuesday, Nov. 17, keeping the daily positivity-rate above 5% for the fifth consecutive day. And at 3.35%, the cumulative positivity-rate is now higher than that of New York state. (According to Johns Hopkins University of Medicine Coronavirus Resource Center, New York has a cumulative positivity-rate of 3.34%.)
The DHHR also reported the deaths of an additional 14 West Virginians. Among those confirmed deceased are an 86-year-old Cabell County woman, a 44-year-old Mingo County man, a 78-year-old Mercer County woman, a 90-year-old Brooke County woman, a 68-year-old Wyoming County man, a 74-year-old Kanawha County woman, a 72-year-old Roane County woman, a 76-year-old Nicolas County man, an 81-year-old Wood County woman, an 86-year-old Harrison County man, a 62-year-old Wayne County man, a 92-year-old Jefferson County man, a 76-year-old Logan County man and a 94-year-old Jefferson County man.
“Today is a difficult day in our fight against COVID-19,” Cabinet Secretary Bill Crouch said in a statement posted on the DHHR website. “As we work to slow the spread of this virus in West Virginia, we must do better. Our hearts go out to all who are grieving during this time.”
With 30 more residents succumbing to the virus over the past three days, the total number of deaths in West Virginia due to complications stemming from COVID-19 is now 612.
There have been 36,227 identified cases of coronavirus within the state since the onset of the pandemic, 11,172 of which are currently active. 12,663 laboratory tests were conducted on Tuesday, Nov. 17, bringing the state’s seven-day testing average to an even 12,000. Assuming that average is maintained, West Virginia will administer it’s one-millionth COVID-19 test on Saturday, Nov. 21.
At present, 429 residents are hospitalized with COVID-19, with 126 of them being cared for in the ICU. 50 of those infected with the virus are being treated with ventilators.