CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Jim Justice has suspended all elective medical procedures in West Virginia and he has directed private campgrounds to prohibit new out-of-state campers.
Justice signed the orders as West Virginia continues to put protections in place to limit the rate of spread of COVID-19.
“As of 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, all elective surgeries are suspended so we can continue to do whatever we can to protect our healthcare providers and conserve medical supplies,” Justice said.
“And we are also shutting down our private campgrounds to those new arrivals from out-of-state,” Justice added. “We are moving in the right direction, we’re doing the right things to limit the exposure of West Virginians to this virus and we can’t afford now to have someone come in from out-of-state and infect our residents.”
According to information available Wednesday, 191 cases of Coronavirus had been confirmed in West Virginia — three were in Greenbrier County. One death had been reported in the state.
“We remain the highest risk state in the nation and while statistics show us that the rate of positive tests for COVID-19 in West Virginia is at 3.8 percent, compared to eight to 10 percent across the rest of the country and 30 to 50 percent in New York, we can’t let our guard down. If we do, our health care centers will be overrun and it will be catastrophic,” Justice said.
On Monday, Justice signed an executive order requiring out-of-state citizens to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in West Virginia and he authorized West Virginia State Police to monitor the state roads and highways to enforce the order.
“For those who are crossing our state lines conducting interstate commerce, or commuting for work or essential business, military duty or health and medical care reasons, we don’t want to impede you. This is aimed at people from Louisiana, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Italy or China, and other places where COVID-19 has spread substantially. We have to do everything we can to protect our citizens and these folks have got to self-isolate if they are going to come here,” Justice said.
The Virginian Review has been serving Covington, Clifton Forge, Alleghany County and Bath County since 1914.