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The positivity rate of COVID-19 in Mingo County is currently the highest of any county in the Mountain State.

As of 10 a.m. Monday, Dec. 28, according to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources COVID-19 dashboard, the percent positivity rate in Mingo County is at 18.58 with the infection rate sitting at 84.77.

The two numbers put Mingo County in the red on the daily Color Alert Map released by the WV DHHR. Thirty-eight counties across the Mountain State were listed as red, and 14 were orange.

The weekly educational map released by the W.Va. Department of Education was not published this week due to the holiday, but if it were, only a small portion of students in the state would be attending school in-person.

As of 10 a.m. Monday, Mingo County has reported 1,379 total cases of COVID-19, with 387 of those cases currently considered active and 972 individuals have recovered. The county has reported 20 deaths related to complications from COVID-19.

As of Monday morning, West Virginia as a whole has reported 81,436 cases since the beginning of the pandemic with 1,263 deaths due to complications from COVID-19.

There’s good news for local residents, however, as the first shipments of COVID-19 were recently received in Mingo County. Mingo County Health Department Administrator Keith Blankenship said they should receive another shipment of vaccinations next week and will continue to receive shipments on a weekly basis.

Phase 1 of the W.Va. COVID-19 Vaccination Program, which will take place from December to February, will see vaccinations administered to hospitals, long-term care, pharmacy, community infrastructure, emergency response, public health officials, first responders, other health care employees and teachers and other sectors for critical services to state, continuity of government, associations, utilities and transport.

Phase 2, which is estimated to begin in March, will vaccinate the rest of the general population, beginning with the elderly or those with pre-existing health conditions.

The Mingo County Health Department urges the community to continue to practice social distancing, wear face coverings and obey all governor’s executive orders.

The Mingo County Health Department and the West Virginia National Guard are offering free COVID-19 testing sites across the county. For locations and times of other testing sites, visit the health department Facebook page.

For more information about COVID-19 visit the WV DHHR at www.coronavirus.wv.gov or the CDC at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus. For any remaining questions, you may also call the Mingo County Health Department at 304-235-3570.

Jarrid McCormick is a reporter for the Williamson Daily News. He can be reached by email at jmccormick@HDMediaLLC.com.