Higher COVID case counts continue in Southwest Virginia – 156 new cases reported Wednesday

Local Coronavirus Coverage

All nine of Southwest Virginia’s counties have higher COVID case rates than the state as a whole and the region’s average is more than double the state’s.

RICHMOND, Va. (WJHL) — Southwest Virginia’s COVID-19 community spread rate remained more than double the statewide average after the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reported 156 new cases Wednesday.

Five new hospitalizations also were reported in the nine-county region, including four in Washington County, which has the state’s highest population-adjusted COVID hospitalization rate during the pandemic.

Just one new death was reported, in Scott County, which also reported the other hospitalization.

Recent new hospitalizations in Southwest Virginia have been occurring at more than triple the state rate.

The number of weekly new cases per 100,000 dropped to 335 across the region from 352 Tuesday. The state’s rate declined from 163 Tuesday to 156.

All nine counties have rates above the state average, but between them, there is a fairly wide range of numbers.

Scott County currently has the highest rate of 566, with Smyth and Wise next at 442 and 440. Tazewell’s rate is down to 200, Dickenson and Washington (including Bristol) are both below 250 and Russell is below 300.

The region’s hospitalization and death rates remained above state averages both for the past week and since the beginning of September, when the delta variant’s surge began impacting those data.

New hospitalizations per 100,000 are 20.0 regionally and 6.0 statewide over the past seven days. Since Sept. 1, they are 111.9 regionally and 52.3 statewide.

Deaths per 100,000 are 7.9 regionally over the past week, more than double the state figure of 3.5 per 100,000. Since Sept. 1, those numbers are 54.2 in the region and 20.0 statewide.

Southwest Virginians are now vaccinated at a rate more than 20% behind the state average.

Southwest Virginia’s percentage of vaccinated people continues to fall further behind the state’s. The percentage of population with at least one dose recently fell to more than 20% behind the state’s rate.

The 48.8% of people with at least one vaccine dose is lower than all but two states, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Idaho’s total is 48.3% and West Virginia’s is 48.7%.

Virginia’s percentage is the 15th highest in the nation.

Statewide, VDH reported 678,066 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Commonwealth on Oct. 20.

According to VDH, the total number of confirmed and probable cases is 911,321.

VDH reports there have been 11,429 confirmed coronavirus-related deaths across the state.

Note: VDH does not report whether cases are active or recovered. County and community case totals can include active, recovered, confirmed and probable cases.

Bristol, Va. – 2,239 cases / 161 hospitalizations / 47 deaths (5 new cases)
Buchanan County – 2,349 cases / 140 hospitalizations / 59 deaths (18 new cases)
Dickenson County – 1,590 cases / 55 hospitalizations / 26 deaths (7 new cases)
Lee County – 3,667 cases / 138 hospitalizations / 59 deaths (10 new cases)
Norton – 556 cases / 28 hospitalizations / 13 deaths (-1 new case)
Russell County – 3,691 cases / 152 hospitalizations / 58 deaths (8 new cases)
Scott County – 3,071 cases / 163 hospitalizations / 76 deaths (21 new cases, 1 new hospitalization, 1 new death)
Smyth County – 4,757 cases / 283 hospitalizations / 113 deaths (20 new cases)
Tazewell County – 5,597 cases / 220 hospitalizations / 98 deaths (14 new cases)
Washington County, Va. – 7,445 cases / 576 hospitalizations / 143 deaths (20 new cases, 4 new hospitalizations)
Wise County – 5,160 cases / 226 hospitalizations / 126 deaths (34 new cases)

For full coverage of the entire Commonwealth of Virginia, click HERE.

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