March 12, 2020
Highlights of WV Governor Jim Justice’s Press Briefing on COVID-19 Response
- Justice:Zero confirmed cases in West Virginia, “but that doesn’t mean it’s not coming.” The state will continue to be proactive and needs to follow the lead of other states.
- The state’s senior population (aged 60 and up) need to be concerned and stay away from big gatherings. “Above 80 [years old] is dangerous.”
- The state is implementing a state employee travel ban. Asking residents to reconsider all non-essential travel. Will likely last 3-4 weeks and be re-evaluated.
- All nursing homes shall restrict visitations except in end-of-life circumstances.
- All state basketball tournaments are indefinitely suspendedto a later date.
- The situation has changed dramatically in the last 24 hours. Health experts still say our public schools don’t have to be shut down unless a student at the school tests positive but if things change dramatically again that decision will be re-evaluated.
- The state is discouraging large groups of people gathering together,but is not yet to the point of outright banning such gatherings.
- Cathy Slemp, State Health Officer:Testing is increasing but the situation is similar to yesterday. Wish we had more test kits. Advises people continue social distancing and avoiding any events with large crowds. “The risk to West Virginians is still very low right now. We don’t have evidence of widespread transmission in the state.”