CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice read through the 17 most recent COVID-19 deaths during his virtual briefing on Monday morning, but said those numbers are probably lower than reality due to holiday-related reporting delays.
There is “no question we have a real live problem in West Virginia,” the governor said citing the state’s color-coded map which now shows that 52 of 55 counties are “red” or “orange.”
“Every single person we get vaccinated will help and help and help. The more we wear our masks and protect ourselves, the faster we’re going to stop it. If you want this thing to absolutely get like a horror film all we have to do is stop wearing our masks and just sit on the sidelines. When it’s your time to get vaccinated, you’ve got to run the fire,” Gov. Justice said.
West Virginia should get nearly 26,000 additional Pfizer and Moderna doses this week, according to the governor.
The state continues to lead the nation in the rate of both distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccines, 13% better than Maine, the second best state, Justice said. The faster the doses are administered, the more doses the state will get from the federal government, the governor said.
“For God’s sakes a living don’t listen to somebody tell you some hocus pocus bunch of junk about these vaccines that you’re going to grow another arm or you’re going to start growing antlers. I mean for crying out loud you’ve got to take the vaccine West Virginia, because it will really save your life,” Justice said, concluding the briefing.
Gov. Justice offered his comments on the latest federal stimulus package signed by President Trump on Sunday night. “Thank goodness we passed something. It should’ve been passed forever ago and why does it have all kinds of stuff that has nothing to do with COVID? Political, political, political, political. We’ve got too many people and too many business that are really hurting,” Justice said.
The governor also offered his condolences to the family of a West Virginia National Guard Airman who was killed fighting a fire Sunday in Berkeley County.