WV – Gov. Jim Justice joined State health leaders at the
Capitol Complex in Charleston today for a virtual press briefing to once
again update the public on the many precautionary measures being taken in
the interest of protecting the public from the potential spread of novel
coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
“We’re pushing the right buttons to keep this thing under control and
away from us,” Gov. Justice said. “But we’ve got to remember just this:
we are the highest risk state of all.
“Don’t go in a crowd,” Gov. Justice continued. “Wash your hands, stay at
home as much as you can. The sun is shining. We’re better off today than
we were yesterday. If we can get more days under our belt soon, we hope
and pray in every way, shape, form, or fashion that this will pass.”
STATEWIDE DAY OF
PRAYER TO BE HELD TOMORROW
During the briefing, Gov. Justice reminded all West Virginians that a
virtual Day of Prayer service will be broadcast statewide tomorrow,
Wednesday, March 25, 2020, at noon.
“I really urge everyone to watch it and surely pray with us,” Gov.
Justice said. “God above will hear us. He will be the one to get us
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Leaders from a diverse range of
religious backgrounds will take part in the virtual service, providing an
opportunity for all West Virginians, no matter their religious
denomination, to come together in a time of reflection and prayer.
More details on how to watch the statewide Day of Prayer service will be
released later today.
FIRST STATE TO BEGIN MANUFACTURING DRUG TO POTENTIALLY TREAT COVID-19
Gov. Justice also spotlighted new efforts underway at Mylan’s
manufacturing facility in West Virginia to produce hydroxychloroquine
“They’re the first in the country that’s now manufacturing this product
and it’s right here in West Virginia,” Gov. Justice said. “Mylan, we’re
really proud of what you’re doing, we thank you in every way, and I
couldn’t be more proud of the fact you’re from West Virginia.”
The drug, which has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration for the treatment of other conditions, is currently being
investigated by the World Health Organization to determine its potential
effectiveness in treating COVID-19.
SUPPLY CENTER CREATED
During today’s briefing, West Virginia National Guard Adjutant General
Maj. Gen. James A. Hoyer announced that, at the direction of the
Governor, the WVNG has created a consolidated supply center. The National
Guard is working alongside the West Virginia Department of Health and
Human Resources as well as the West Virginia Division of Homeland
Security and Emergency Management to help ensure equipment needs between
healthcare workers and emergency responders are being met.
Gov. Justice also announced that members of the West Virginia National
Guard performed additional COVID-19 testing at a nursing home in
Monongalia County after a positive case was recently identified there.
“That was surely one of the reasons – the biggest reason – why we moved
forward with the ‘Stay At Home’ order,” Gov. Justice said. “It is surely
concerning when you have community transmission and that’s what we’ve got
going on right now.
“All of our health teams have been working and are still working to
ensure those in that nursing home, as well as those that are in other
nursing homes, are as safe as they can be.”
Nearly two weeks ago, on Thursday, March 12, 2020, Gov. Justice
announced he would be asking all nursing homes to
restrict visitors, with exceptions for end-of-life or serious illness
situations, in efforts to make sure residents were as safe as possible.
“I thank God every day in the world that we did it and we did it long ago
when it was meaningful,” Gov. Justice said. “It’s a really tough thing to
do – when you tell somebody you can’t go see their mom or your dad –
that’s tough stuff. And it’s really meaningful for those in the nursing
home to be able to get those visits. But I think, really and truly, we
made the right call there.”
The Governor also announced that work continued around the clock to
process new unemployment claims for individuals who are out
of work, separated from employment, have had their hours of employment
reduced, or are prevented from working due to either a documented medical
condition caused by COVID-19 or due to communicable disease control
measures related to COVID-19.
The Governor says that staff with Workforce West Virginia and the West
Virginia Department of Commerce processed approximately 7,000 of these
claims yesterday alone.