Justice says W.Va. coronavirus numbers are improving, but he wants to make sure trend continues

Gov. Jim Justice said he’s pleased by the current trend of West Virginia’s coronavirus statistics.

But, the governor warned that a longer trend needs to be apparent.

“One robin doesn’t make spring,” he said. “This is more like one robin right now that we have.”

During a briefing on Wednesday, Justice pointed to several numbers to assess covid that have been improving in recent days.

The daily percent positive on Monday morning, for example, was 1.06 percent. That was down significantly from other recent days.

The number of active cases has gone down in recent days.

On Monday, that was 1,576.

On Tuesday, it was 1,552.

And today, it was 1,480.

The reproduction rate of the virus spread had declined to 1.09 in West Virginia, still higher than optimal but now better than many other states. If Rt is above 1.0, the virus will spread quickly. When Rt is below 1.0, the virus will stop spreading.

Justice noted that a mandatory mask order has been in effect since July 7, but he stopped short of definitively crediting the order.

“Our numbers are moving, for the last few days, back in the direction we want ’em to move,” he said.

“Now can we attribute all that to the fact that we did a mandatory executive order to make us all wear a mask? We probably can’t. But we can say that something is making this move and move in our favor. And absolutely wearing the mask is absolutely making it move.”

West Virginia did report one death on Wednesday, the state’s 101st.

“Please don’t let this wonderful, wonderful lady become a statistic,” Justice said.




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