MORGANTOWN — With more and more of West Virginia’s elderly population vaccinated every day, COVID-19 is changing tack.
That was the message delivered by West Virginia COVID-19 Czar Clay Marsh.
Today, the age group most likely to contract and spread the virus within the state is 10-19 years old.
The age group most likely to contract and spread the more dangerous and infectious United Kingdom variant of the illness is 20-29 years old.
And the current average age of those testing positive in West Virginia has fallen to 34.
“I’m telling you. I’m telling our young people out there. I’m telling you as point-blank as I can tell you that you absolutely should have a valid concern to be able to go get vaccinated,” Gov. Jim Justice said during his Friday briefing. “Without any question, every medical expert in the land can tell you that your exposure is causing a real issue, a real issue. Even if you don’t get sick, you can transmit this to others — maybe your grandad or your mom or whoever, and we lose them.”
Along with the $100 savings bond initiative aimed at getting shots in the arms of 16-to-35-year-olds, Justice rolled out another push on Friday targeting the state’s parks.
He said vaccines would be available in high-traffic state parks and forests in the run-up to Memorial Day. That list includes Chief Logan, Pipestem, Little Beaver, Cedar Creek, Coopers Rock, Kanawha, Greenbrier, Tygart Lake, Berkeley Springs, and Tu-Endie-Wei.
Additionally, Justice said that on Memorial Day weekend, all state park employees and their family members, as well as park guests, can get vaccinated at the parks.
Also on Friday, State Health Officer Ayne Amjad said the state has entered into a five-year contract with VitalChek Inc. to implement an electronic death reporting system. The financial details of the contract were not available during the briefing.
Lastly, as an added bonus, Justice brought out his pooch, Baby Dog, who offered her Kentucky Derby predictions while dressed in a hat.
Baby Dog likes favorite Essential Quality to win today’s (Saturday’s) race, with Highly Motivated and Hot Rod Charlie also drawing her discerning eye.