BLUEFIELD — More coronavirus cases were reported Thursday morning across the region, including yet another new infection in Mercer County.
The new case reported Thursday morning by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources brought the county’s cumulative total of COVID-19 cases to date to 45 with 31 active infections having been reported over the last two weeks.
The DHHR also reported a new case in Monroe County, bringing the county’s cumulative total of virus cases to date to 12 with four active infections.
The Virginia Department of Health also reported new cases Thursday in Southwest Virginia, but since the health department is now grouping non-contagious antibody test results with active COVID-19 cases, the Daily Telegraph is not able to independently verify if the new cases reported Thursday are active infections or simply antibody test results from weeks ago.
But the health department did increase Tazewell County’s cumulative total of virus cases to date Thursday to 16, which is up from 15 on Wednesday. The health department also reported a new cumulative total of 17 virus cases in Giles County, which is up from 15 on Wednesday.
The troubling surge in new virus cases comes as the long Fourth of July weekend is approaching, a time when many will once again be traveling.
Although the coronavirus pandemic began in mid-March, the majority of the virus cases confirmed to date in Mercer County have occurred within the last two weeks. Health officials say travel by area residents to Myrtle Beach, S.C., a virus hot spot, led to the increase in local cases.
So far the Daily Telegraph is only aware of one hospitalization in Mercer County, and that individual has since recovered from the virus.