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More COVID-19-related deaths go unreported, W.Va. Gov. calls for investigation

Published: Mar. 19, 2021 at 11:13 AM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - We are being disrespectful to great West Virginians,” W.Va. Gov. Jim Justice said Friday during a press conference where he announced 20 additional unreported coronavirus deaths.

The additional deaths are on top of the 165 unreported deaths that were confirmed last week.

Gov. Justice said Friday that officials believe as many as 50 deaths may have gone unreported but at this time, only 20 have been confirmed.

Last week. the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) released the list of over 65 healthcare facilities that didn’t follow COVID-19 death reporting protocols.

FOR THAT INFORMATION - CLICK HERE

The State Health Officer, Dr. Anye Amjad, previously said facilities weren’t reporting deaths according to policies that were set in April of 2020.

These deaths became apparent to the DHHR once death certificates came to the vital registration endpoint, according to Dr. Amjad.

“As I said the other day when I had to read through 165, I think, unreported deaths that it was unacceptable, inexcusable in every way. There is no reason in the world that this could be acceptable.”

Gov. Justice

Gov. Justice announced Friday he was calling for an investigation.

“All the way down. Flip every rock. Turn everything where we can absolutely without question pinpoint where the short falls are.”

The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) reports as of March 19, 2021, there have been 2,341,373 total laboratory results received for COVID-19, with 137,092 total cases and 2,600 total deaths.

In the past 24 hours, DHHR has confirmed the deaths of a 67-year old male from Mercer County, a 61-year old male from Monongalia County, a 75-year old male from Hampshire County, a 75-year old male from Jackson County, a 54-year old female from Lewis County, a 78-year old female from Raleigh County, a 72-year old male from Kanawha County, a 59-year old male from Kanawha County, a 69-year old male from Wood County, and an 86-year old male from Lincoln County.

As previously noted, DHHR’s Bureau for Public Health, through its Health Statistics Center, conducted a data match to examine COVID-19 associated deaths reported through death certificates, which revealed COVID-19 related deaths were not reported to DHHR.

Those include a 96-year old female from Brooke County, an 86-year old female from Wood County, a 94-year old male from Hancock County, a 73-year old female from Tucker County, a 75-year old female from Mineral County, a 79-year old male from Marshall County, an 82-year old male from Berkeley County, a 58-year old male from Wirt County, a 70-year old male from Wetzel County, an 89-year old male from Wood County, a 92-year old female from Kanawha County, a 93-year old female from Hancock County, a 93-year old female from Ohio County, a 74-year old male from Jefferson County, an 84-year old male from Putnam County, a 72-year old male from Tyler County, a 64-year old male from Randolph County, a 75-year old male from Monongalia County, a 76-year old male from Marion County, and a 77-year old male from Nicholas County.

CASES PER COUNTY: Barbour (1,300), Berkeley (10,176), Boone (1,672), Braxton (802), Brooke (2,044), Cabell (8,143), Calhoun (238), Clay (385), Doddridge (502), Fayette (2,849), Gilmer (725), Grant (1,146), Greenbrier (2,457), Hampshire (1,577), Hancock (2,603), Hardy (1,337), Harrison (5,005), Jackson (1,710), Jefferson (3,801), Kanawha (12,529), Lewis (1,069), Lincoln (1,309), Logan (2,878), Marion (3,827), Marshall (3,128), Mason (1,825), McDowell (1,396), Mercer (4,316), Mineral (2,613), Mingo (2,227), Monongalia (8,398), Monroe (997), Morgan (955), Nicholas (1,299), Ohio (3,739), Pendleton (631), Pleasants (815), Pocahontas (603), Preston (2,652), Putnam (4,390), Raleigh (5,100), Randolph (2,432), Ritchie (635), Roane (509), Summers (710), Taylor (1,119), Tucker (512), Tyler (645), Upshur (1,736), Wayne (2,655), Webster (407), Wetzel (1,131), Wirt (365), Wood (7,285), Wyoming (1,783).

West Virginians may pre-register for their COVID-19 vaccination.

Walgreens is no longer using West Virginia’s vaccination scheduling system. The chain is making appointments with West Virginians on its own.

You can schedule an appointment by clicking here.

West Virginians can also schedule an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine at Fruth by calling your local pharmacy.

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