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W.Va. Governor announces medical experts are working to expand orange zone

Governor Justice holds press conference
Governor Justice holds press conference(Governor Jim Justice)
Published: Jan. 11, 2021 at 12:48 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - West Virginia Gov. Justice announced he is looking to expand the orange zone on the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources COVID-19 metrics map.

The governor made the announcement during his press briefing on Monday.

More details will be released Wednesday. This would allow a little additional freedom regarding the ability of going to school in orange on the County Alert System Map. However, the governor says in orange, “we will go back to school.”

Governor Justice said the medical experts believe the exposure for going back to school is extremely minimal.

He also announced he is signing an executive order for schools to return to in-person learning for those in 8th grade and below, starting January 19.

Grades 9-12 will not be in school if they are red on the County Alert System Map. This includes private and Christian schools, according to the Governor.

The West Virginia Board of Education will release more details following a board meeting on Wednesday.

In regards to sports, Governor Justice says they will allow games for winter sports to begin on March 3, if they’re in school.

Practices will begin on February 14, if school is in session.

You have to have 14 practices before you can play, according to the governor.

The Governor says if you’re in the red or in remote and not in school, you can’t play.

Governor Justice also says they expect all individuals in nursing homes across the state to get their second dose of the coronavirus vaccine within the next couple of weeks.

He says the state leads the nation in administering the coronavirus vaccine, according to the CDC.

Over 92,000 vaccines have been administered.

He also announced that the COVID-19 vaccine information line will operate Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can call 1-833-734-0965 if you have any questions about the vaccine or the process.

There are going to be 12 regional community vaccination clinics statewide this coming week. The details will be announced on Tuesday. The West Virginia National Guard is putting together those clinics.

Dr. Clay Marsh, West Virginia’s COVID-19 Czar, announced the new dashboard on the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources website. It’s called the “Vaccine Summary.” It shows the number of 1st doses received, the number of 2nd doses received, how many vaccinations have been administered each day, and more.

This is a developing story.

Keep checking the WSAZ App for the latest information.

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