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Active COVID-19 cases in West Virginia hit 6,934 Thursday, the highest they have been since Oct. 31 when officials believed the late-summer surge was beginning to calm.

Of those active cases, 1,114 were newly reported Thursday. Nineteen additional COVID-19 related deaths were reported, bringing the pandemic total to 4,717.

The state’s cumulative percent positivity — which tracks the rate of positive cases compared to total tests given since the beginning of the pandemic — climbed to a pandemic-high 6.17% Thursday, according to the Department of Health and Human Resources COVID-19 dashboard.

COVID-19 hospitalizations totaled 522, a slight increase from Wednesday, with 169 patients in intensive care units. Of those patients, 98 are receiving care on a ventilator.

More than 74% of hospitalized patients are unvaccinated, according to the dashboard. That increases to 85% for those in intensive care and 87% for those on a ventilator.

As of Thursday, 49.6% of eligible West Virginians — 843,292 residents over the age of 5 — are fully vaccinated against the virus. Another 138,984 individuals — about 8.2% of those eligible — have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Vaccinations for children ages 5 to 11 are still on the rise, with 5,564 doses administered to date, including 508 since Wednesday.

About 6.4% of fully vaccinated residents — 53,425 individuals — have received a booster dose. State officials have directed anyone who was fully vaccinated six months ago with an mRNA vaccine or two months ago with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to get a booster.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention classifies all counties in West Virginia as having “high transmission” of the COVID-19 virus. For the past week, state health officials have said the state’s transmission rate is increasing and expected to go past 1.0 — meaning the outbreak is growing — over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Caity Coyne covers health. She can be reached at 304-348-7939 or caity.coyne@hdmediallc.com. Follow @CaityCoyne on Twitter.

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