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106 COVID patients at Centra

COVID-19 cases are fluctuating across the commonwealth as officials work to increase testing access in the health district.

New daily cases of the coronavirus in Virginia have bounced up and down throughout the last week. On Monday, Sept. 13, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) reported 2,303 daily COVID-19 cases across the state, a slight reduction compared to 2,395 cases reported Monday, Sept. 6. The state’s seven-day moving average has also remained relatively the same at 3,453 cases as of Sept. 13, up slightly from 3,423 seven days earlier.

From Sept. 6 to Sept. 13, according to VDH, Lunenburg County saw 28 new cases of the virus.

Prince Edward County had 54 new COVID-19 cases.

Buckingham was up 39 cases, and Cumberland County had risen 18 cases. Cumberland County also reported one new coronavirus-related death this week.

In Charlotte County, 32 new COVID cases were identified between Sept. 6 and Sept. 13.

Centra Health was reporting 93 COVID-19 patients at Lynchburg General as of Monday, Sept. 13, and 13 patients at Centra Southside Community Hospital in Farmville, bringing the health care provider to a total of 106 active coronavirus patients. Of the 93 patients at Lynchburg General, 18 were in the ICU, and 13 of those ICU patients were actively being ventilated.

Ten Lynchburg General patients and two Southside patients were vaccinated, and four Lynchburg patients and one Southside patient were partially vaccinated. The remaining 83 Lynchburg patients and 11 Southside patients as of Monday, according to Centra, were unvaccinated.

As of its last update Sept. 12, the Longwood University COVID-19 dashboard was reporting 14 active cases among students, faculty and staff. The university has seen 48 cumulative cases of the virus since Aug. 15.

In its last update Sept. 9, Hampden-Sydney College was reporting zero total positive student cases and one positive employee case with one active case and 10 individuals actively quarantining.

On Monday, Acting Piedmont Health District Director Dr. Sulola Adekoya noted that increasing vaccination rates remains a high priority for the health district, which continues to lag behind in vaccination efforts compared to the rest of the state.

As of Monday, Sept. 13, the percentage of fully vaccinated people in each county was as follows:

Lunenburg: 44%

Prince Edward: 38%

Buckingham: 44%

Cumberland: 41.2%

Charlotte: 43%

Adekoya said the Piedmont Health District’s highest vaccination rate exists in the 65-and-over age group. Approximately 72% of adults age 65 and up in the Piedmont Health District have been vaccinated. She reiterated data shows approximately 85% of the total population would need to get the vaccine in order for herd immunity to be obtained.

She added the health district is beefing up efforts to combat further spread of the virus by increasing availability of COVID-19 testing.

The Piedmont Health District will continue to offer free drive-thru COVID-19 screening and testing services at Prince Edward Farmville Youth Association Gymnasium at 2750 Layne St., in Farmville on Wednesdays through Oct. 12 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. or until supplies run out.

On Aug. 26, VDH announced the COVID-related death of a child under the age of 10 in the state’s Northern Region. On Monday, Adekoya noted that making sure all eligible adults receive the vaccine can help protect area children who are not old enough to get vaccinated.

“To me, one death is one death too many.”