West Virginia has the highest COVID case count in the United States, hospitals in crisis mode

Katelyn Waltemyer
Jackson Newspapers
Medical professionals pronate a 39-year-old unvaccinated COVID-19 patient in the medical intensive care unit at St. Luke's Boise Medical Center in Boise, Idaho.

West Virginia is No. 1 in the U.S. for COVID cases with more than 100 out of 100,000 infected, West Virginia University Medicine announced Thursday on its Facebook page. 

According to The New York Times, West Virginia has a case count of 109 per 100,000, which is a 45% increase in the last 14 days. The daily hospitalization average in the state is 917, which is a 31% increase in the last 14 days. 

WVU Medicine said in its post that nine of its hospitals are operating under a "crisis-level of care." One hospital declared an emergency crisis Wednesday due to a strain on its oxygen system that occurred because of the high volume of COVID patients. 

The post said that 90% of WVU Medicine's COVID patients in intensive care units are unvaccinated. 

"On behalf of the many healthcare providers who are working the frontlines at all out hospitals, we respectfully ask that all West Virginians come together during this crisis and make sound decisions that ultimately protect themselves, their family and friends," the statement said. 

The post ended by urging West Virginians to do "what's right." 

According to the Jackson County Health Department's website, residents can register online at vaccinate.wv.gov for the COVID vaccine. 

— Katelyn Waltemyer (she/her) is the General Assignment and Enterprise Reporter for Jackson Newspapers in Jackson County, West Virginia. Have a news tip on local government or education? Or a good feature? You can reach Katelyn at kwaltemyer@jacksonnewspapers.com. Follow her on Twitter @Kate_Waltemyer.