These numbers are not good for West Virginia: 511 new confirmed cases of Covid-19, a record 7,271 active cases, a daily positive test rate of 4.96 percent and, worst of all, 16 more deaths.
That is the quick review of the daily report issued by the state’s Department of Health and Human Resources as the pandemic is raging throughout the country and picking up steam in the Mountain State.
Nationally, Covid-19 hospitalizations scored an all-time high of 61,964 patients on Tuesday, more than doubling since September, according to the Covid Tracking Project.
The U.S. number now tops the peak reached early in the pandemic, when 59,940 hospitalized patients were reported on April 15.
In West Virginia, hospitalizations backed off its record 290 on Monday, coming in at 280 on Tuesday. On Oct. 1, the number was 164. A month earlier, on Sept. 1, hospitalizations were at 146. And on Aug. 1, 112 people were hospitalized for treatment of Covid.
The trends are undeniable and relentless.
In the first nine days of November, the state recorded 4,464 confirmed Covid cases with a daily average of 496, according to the DHHR online database. The total is more than double the 1,939 cases in the first nine days of October, nearly triple the 1,544 recorded over the first nine days of September and more than four times the 1,036 counted during the first nine days of August.
On Aug. 9, nearly five months into the pandemic, the state had counted 139 Covid-related deaths. In a month’s time, 118 deaths would be added to the total, followed by 119 from Sept. 9 to Oct. 9. In the last month, 170 deaths would be counted, pushing the total to 546 – 407 more than the Aug. 9 total only three months ago.
And, experts are predicting more dire days ahead.
As winter approaches, new cases are already setting records in much of the United States. The United States surpassed 10 million known cases on Sunday, and is averaging more than 111,000 new cases a day, a record.
Across a nine-county region in southern West Virginia, 47 new cases were confirmed with none of the nine counties in The Register-Herald’s primary market hitting double digits for the first time in a while.
Mercer County added nine cases while Raleigh County hit the 1,000 mark with seven new cases.
Like Mercer, Wyoming County added nine cases in the Tuesday report while Fayette, Greenbrier and Nicholas counties each added six. Summers added five to its total as Monroe County stayed at 282 total cases and McDowell County backed up one case, falling from 176 total cases to 175.
Included in the DHHR’s death list on Tuesday were a 79-year-old woman from Fayette County, a 72-year-old woman from Raleigh County and an 88-year-old woman from Summers County. Fayette has had 24 Covid-related deaths so far, Raleigh 14 and Summers four. Mercer County, with 35 deaths according to the DHHR, leads all counties in the region.
The DHHR also confirmed the deaths of a 96-year-old woman from Boone County, a 75-year-old woman from Boone County, a 92-year-old man from Wetzel County, a 47-year-old man from Wetzel County, a 79-year-old woman from Boone County, a 65-year-old man from Preston County, a 65-year-old man from Marshall County, an 85-year-old man from Wetzel County, an 85-year-old woman from Putnam County, an 81-year-old woman from Ohio County, a 78-year-old man from Hancock County, a 76-year-old man from Kanawha County and an 80-year-old woman from Kanawha County.