(WVVA) - At least 21 states across the nation are reporting upticks in new COVID-19 infections Tuesday. West Virginia is among that list. Even more concerning, Fayette County reported southern West Virginia's first UK variant of the virus Monday afternoon.
Health experts blame the rise in cases on reductions and even the elimination of pandemic restrictions in many states. West Virginia Governor Jim Justice recently announced he's allowing 100% capacity in bars, restaurants, and other businesses.
"Seeing all these people not social distancing, no mask. They're not invincible, young people seem to think they are invincible when they're not. They may not get it, but they certainly could easily spread it to other members of the family and other people of the community."Roger Topping, Administrator | Mercer County Health Department
A new surge may emerge as the vaccine roll out ramps-up across the two Virginias and the rest of the country, but experts say we are a long way from achieving herd immunity. This is according to Radiation Oncologist Dr. Joe Baisden.
"There is still so much virus circulating in the population and so many people that don't have a significant immunity, that the rates of getting infected are very high and so then the rates of people having bad outcomes of being infected are also still very high."Dr. Joe Baisden Radiation Oncologist | GenesisCare
The Mercer County health department expects 4,000 people to receive at least one dose of the vaccine just this week. With roughly 2,800 of those expected to be second dose vaccinations.
Medical experts believe time will prove the COVID vaccine to be just as effective for those who chose to get it.