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West Virginia’s Weekly COVID-19 Vaccine Allotment Swells to 92,000 Doses

West Virginia will receive more than 92,000 antivirus doses a week with the approval of the third COVID-19 vaccine, the governor said Monday during his pandemic briefing.

“We’re ready for them,” Gov. Jim Justice said.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Saturday issued the emergency use authorization for the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, the third vaccine the agency has authorized for emergency use. The first two were the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, which started arriving in West Virginia in December.

The Johnson and Johnson version is a single-shot vaccine and doesn’t require the same super-cold storage equipment as the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, which are two-shot vaccines.

The Johnson and Johnson vaccine may offer a logistical advantage in reaching residents who are home-bound and have other mobility or anxiety issues, Dr. Clay Marsh, the coronavirus czar for the state, said. The plan is to put the Johnson and Johnson vaccine into the same rotation as the others, he said.

The Johnson and Johnson vaccines will be delivered to West Virginia this week, Justice said.

With the Pfizer and Moderna dosages, the state will receive 92,770 a week, which includes first and second doses, he said. The state will receive 34,100 from Moderna, 36,270 from Pfizer and the 15,500 from Johnson and Johnson, Justice said.

Justice also said there may be additional relaxation of the pandemic restrictions announced later this week, however, said it would be premature to disclose what those might be. The governor last week eased the restrictions on restaurants, grocery stores and other businesses.

The Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department announced 14 new COVID-19 cases in its Monday night update. That brought the county’s totals to 3,806 cases and 65 related deaths since the pandemic began.

The Marshall County Health Department announced 12 new confirmed positive cases and two probable cases in its Monday night update, bringing that county’s totals to 2,358 confirmed cases, 636 probable cases, six hospitalizations and 62 associated deaths.

Three of the four Northern Panhandle counties — Brooke, Ohio and Marshall — were green on Monday’s Department of Health and Human Resources COVID-19 alert map. Hancock County was yellow.

The Belmont County Health Department reported 5,313 total cases since the pandemic’s beginning, with 62 hospitalizations and 99 related deaths.

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