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COVID-19 Cases Jump Again in Ohio County

This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. The sample was isolated from a patient in the U.S. (NIAID-RML via AP)

WHEELING — As the weekly number of new COVID-19 cases in Ohio County jumped yet again Monday, hospitals around West Virginia are straining against that rise in cases at crisis levels.

The Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department announced Monday that, between Sept.12 and Monday, there have been 249 new cases reported in the county. That’s a significant increase from the 194 announced in the previous weekly report.

COVID cases also are going up among children. Ohio County had 98 new positives among children under 18 years old. That’s up from the 75 new cases among children in the previous weekly report.

The department also reported one new COVID-related death.

In the latest weekly report, WOCHD announced that there are 68 cases of the delta variant in the county, along with 86 cases of the alpha variant and two cases of the gamma variant.

According to the Department of Health and Human Resources COVID-19 dashboard, there have been 3,976 confirmed cases, 1,454 probable cases and 93 related deaths in Ohio County since the pandemic began.

Meanwhile, WVU Medicine mentioned in a recent social media post that nine of its hospitals, including its academic medical center in Morgantown, are operating “at a crisis-level standard of care.” Outside of the Morgantown site, WVU Medicine did not specify which nine hospitals have reached that level.

One of the hospitals, according to WVU Medicine, declared an emergency crisis due to the strain the high number of COVID patients was placing on its oxygen system.

“Make no mistake,” the post read, “this crisis is real. … On behalf of the many healthcare providers who are working the frontlines at all our hospitals, we respectfully ask that all West Virginians come together during this crisis and make sound decisions that ultimately protect themselves, their family and friends, and the State we all love.”

WVU Medicine said that nearly 90% of its COVID ICU patients are unvaccinated.

Three of the four counties in the Northern Panhandle — Hancock, Brooke and Marshall — were red, the highest-risk category on the DHHR’s COVID alert map. Ohio was one of nine orange counties. Two more were gold and the other 44 were red.

The Marshall County Health Department on Monday reported 70 new confirmed positive cases and 37 probable cases between Saturday and Monday. According to the DHHR dashboard, Marshall County has recorded 3,298 confirmed positive cases, 1,361 probable cases and 92 related deaths since the pandemic began.

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