WV looks at reducing restrictions on businesses

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Gov. Justice and state officials provide an update for media on COVID-19 response efforts. West Virginians age 16 and older can pre-register to be vaccinated by visiting Vaccinate.wv.gov or calling the WV Vaccine Info Line at 1-833-734-0965.

Gov. Jim Justice announced there were 13 people who died in West Virginia since his last briefing. He mentioned that while they will be missed, that is a much better number than some recent briefings where the death toll was in the 70s or 80s. He then honored those who passed away by reading their ages and the counties where they lived.

“These people are not numbers. They are not statistics,” said Gov. Justice.

Going over the numbers he talked about the improvements. This included the face that no counites are in Red for the fourth day in a row.

A meeting is planned to discuss lessening the restrictions placed on businesses and schools during the pandemic. An announcement will be made on Friday, Feb. 19, 2021. This could include restaurants and possible changes to blended learning at schools.

More vaccine doses could be on the way. This would be up to 7,000 additional doses. The Governor thanked the Congressional delegation for their help in making this happen.

There are 261,000\ West Virginians who have pre-registered to receive the vaccine. The Governor stated Monroe County picked up their efforts since Monday. However, McDowell County is among several others which are showing low numbers.

The Governor said his proudest number is in connection with the vaccinations. He spoke about the decision to get vaccines into the arms of West Virginians. Anyone with questions regarding the vaccination can call the hotline.

Maj. Gen. James Hoyer (ret). stated West Virginia has seen a 70-percent reduction in deaths since the beginning of 2021. There is also a dramatic drop in hospitalizations.

The DHHR dashboard was updated to include how the vaccinations are being distributed. This includes metrics by county.

The Governor took a moment to discuss the impending winter storm. There are 4 counties in a state of emergency. All other counties are in a state of preparedness. If you have questions about the storm, you are advised to call 211.

He also asked neighbors to check on each other if you are without power.

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