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Outbreak of COVID-19 confirmed at Greenbrier County church

Photo: MGN
Photo: MGN(WHSV)
Published: Jun. 13, 2020 at 6:27 PM EDT
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At least 17 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed at a church in Greenbrier County, W.Va.

It is one of at least five churches in West Virginia that has reported an outbreak of the virus.

Governor Jim Justice says he has ordered the West Virginia National Guard to go to the church and begin to decontaminate the building. That process will begin Sunday.

“I want to strongly encourage all West Virginians, especially when in church settings, to follow the guidelines and use every other pew, maintain social distancing, and please wear masks,” Gov. Justice said. “A lot of the attendance at our churches are those that are elderly and at higher risk, so we are cautioning everyone to strictly follow our guidelines. As I have said many times, we will have stormy seas before we get a vaccine, so it is imperative that we strictly follow the guidelines or the seas will only get rougher.”

In addition to the cleaning, testing will be available at Dorie Miller Park in Lewisburg from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. on Sunday and Monday.

“There are several key lessons to be learned from these outbreaks. Practicing good prevention measures do make a difference, such as wearing a mask, staying 6 feet apart and using good hygiene,” said Dr. Cathy Slemp, State Health Officer and Commissioner of DHHR’s Bureau for Public Health. “Out of state travel can be a risk and precautions should be taken upon return to West Virginia. Finally, please stay home from work or other community events if you are not feeling well.”

The names of the churches where the outbreaks have been reported are not being released, however the DHHR says the others are in Boone, Hampshire, Jefferson, and Marshall counties.

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