The West Virginia County Alert System map released earlier today (Wednesday, Oct. 28) shows that Mingo County has gone to “red” status.

According to the metrics released by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, the county’s infection rate is 42.69 percent and the percent positivity rate stands at 8.13 percent. The DHHR uses the lower of the two statistics to determine a county’s status. In Mingo County, both indicators rose into the red spectrum.

Mingo County has bounced between “orange” and “red” for the past couple of weeks. The most recent time the county was listed as red was on Saturday when the W.Va. Department of Education released its weekly school reentry update. Other than Saturday, Mingo County’s infection rate was high in the “red” category, however, the percent positivity rate was low enough to keep the county classified as “orange.”

Under the color-coded system, “red” means the county is at a “substantial community transmission.” risk. “Orange” is considered to be a heightened rate of community spread.

Last week Mingo County Health Department Director Keith Blankenship told the county commission that Mingo had entered its worst period since the first positive case of the COVID-19 virus was diagnosed.

Statewide, most of West Virginia’s 55 counties are currently in “green” and “yellow” categories. Seven counties are “gold,” five are “orange” with only two counties — Mingo and Wyoming — being designated as “red.”

As of today’s map (which is based on data analyzed as of 5 p.m. yesterday), the mortality rate in West Virginia has risen to 436 deaths. In the past 24 hours, there have been 358 new positive cases of COVID-19 reported with a total of 4,557 active cases in the state. Of those 226 are hospitalized with 83 being treated in intensive care units and 27 are on ventilators.

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