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COVID-19 vaccine will arrive in West Virginia in two weeks, Justice says

WEST VIRGINIA (WVVA) -- Governor Jim Justice says the coronavirus vaccine will be in West Virginia in as little as two weeks.

After participating in a call with the White House Coronavirus Task Force earlier this week, Justice announced during Wednesday’s press briefing that the first batch of the Pfizer vaccine will arrive in the Mountain State between December 10th and 12th. The Moderna vaccine will arrive shortly thereafter, he said.

He's urging all West Virginians to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

"For this disease to survive, it's got to hop from A, to B, to C," he said. "If you interrupt that hop, it can't survive. In other words, if there's three people in a chain, and one of them is vaccinated - it can't hop there. It'll never get to C. So, really and truly, that's the key to killing this. That's the key to dropping this right in its tracks."

Both vaccines will require two shots over a period of three to four weeks.

The West Virginia National Guard are spearheading vaccine distribution efforts, Justice says.

“We are ready the very second we receive doses of the vaccine in our state,” he said. “General Hoyer and the West Virginia National Guard are leading the charge on this. We’ve got it down pat. We’re ready to go, and we just hope and pray that more and more of this vaccine will be flowing into West Virginia.”

“The Governor has directed us to identify where we can best administer the initial vaccines – understanding that they will come in in small chunks – with a focus on mitigating fatalities, which means we will begin an initial focus in nursing home facilities since, as we know, 44 percent to almost 50 percent at times during this pandemic of our fatalities have come from those facilities,” Maj. Gen. Hoyer said in his remarks. “Also, we will focus on maintaining the integrity of our healthcare system, particularly our acute care system. The Governor points out we are an exceptionally vulnerable population, even without the Coronavirus. We are in a time of the year when health systems continue to be worked to their maximum capacity to take care of our vulnerable citizens, exclusive of Coronavirus. So we will focus on those two areas, and based on his guidance and direction, we will be rolling out more information as we go forward."

Stick with WVVA as we continue to monitor this developing story.

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