Southwest Virginia new COVID hospitalization rate rising quickly

Local Coronavirus Coverage

Southwest Virginians are being hospitalized for COVID at more than triple the state average.

RICHMOND, Va. (WJHL) — Southwest Virginia’s new COVID hospitalization rate has doubled in the past five days and is more than triple the state average, Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reported Thursday.

VDH reported 12 new hospitalizations in the nine-county region Thursday, bringing the rolling seven-day average per 100,000 population to 11.4. The state average is 3.4.

The new COVID-19 case rate also jumped Thursday as VDH reported 228 new cases in the nine-county region.

The seven-day average of new cases per 100,000 is back near its multi-week high, at 322 — essentially showing that a decrease over the holiday weekend was likely due to low testing numbers.

For the second straight day, cases were particularly high in Washington County and Bristol, totaling 64 after a total of 73 Wednesday. That’s driven Washington County’s combined case rate to 343.

The new hospitalizations included five in Smyth County, three in Buchanan County, two in Washington County and one each in Scott and Dickenson counties. Washington County also reported one new death.

The region’s vaccination rate has continued to fall further behind the state’s with each passing week. Thursday’s VDH report showed that for the first time, the percentage of fully vaccinated people is 20% behind the state rate, with the state now at 65.2% compared to 45.2% for the region.

Like hospitalizations, the rate of new COVID deaths is more than triple the state average. Southwest Virginia’s rolling average is 5.5 new weekly deaths per 100,000 to the state rate of 1.5.

Statewide, VDH reported 718,038 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Commonwealth on Dec. 2.

According to VDH, the total number of confirmed and probable cases is 974,001.

VDH reports there have been 12,378 confirmed coronavirus-related deaths across the state.

Below is a complete breakdown of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths in Southwest Virginia since Dec. 1.

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. – 2,433 cases / 183 hospitalizations / 50 deaths (12 new cases)
Buchanan County – 2,860 cases / 163 hospitalizations / 79 deaths (15 new cases, 3 new hospitalizations)
Dickenson County – 1,978 cases / 65 hospitalizations / 30 deaths (10 new cases, 1 new hospitalization)
Lee County – 3,939 cases / 141 hospitalizations / 62 deaths (15 new cases)
Norton – 661 cases / 35 hospitalizations / 17 deaths (2 new cases)
Russell County – 4,160 cases / 163 hospitalizations / 68 deaths (13 new cases)
Scott County – 3,472 cases / 179 hospitalizations / 84 deaths (22 new cases, 1 new hospitalization)
Smyth County – 5,218 cases / 336 hospitalizations / 125 deaths (23 new cases, 5 new hospitalizations)
Tazewell County – 6,150 cases / 225 hospitalizations / 119 deaths (28 new cases)
Washington County, Va. – 8,217 cases / 646 hospitalizations / 160 deaths (52 new cases, 2 new hospitalizations, 1 new death)
Wise County – 5,949 cases / 239 hospitalizations / 132 deaths (36 new cases)

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

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