Community transmission and prison outbreak causing cases to climb in Fayette County

FAYETTE COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – Just four days ago Fayette County cases were sitting at 187, and now they are at 235.

The daily positive rate on Thursday was 9.5%.

Health officials say they are seeing a concerning increase of community transmission none of which have been related to travel or large gatherings.

On top of that, there is also a prison outbreak at Mt. Olive Correctional Facility in Smithers. Thirty-two inmates have tested positive.

Fayette County Health Officer Dr. Anita Stewart says two are in the hospital, one has recovered and twenty-nine are active on-site.

“Our role is to help if there are staff members that live in our community as well as help with guidance in the facility in collaboration with the Department of Corrections regarding quarantine and isolation, making sure they have the PPE they need through the guard and health command and try to work collaboratively as local and state health as well as Department of Corrections,” she said. 

In response to these rising numbers, the Fayette County Health Department will be conducting barrier-free testing on Tuesday of next week in both the morning and evening.

In the morning, you can be tested at the J.W. and Hazel Ruby Welcome Center (55 Hazel Ruby Lane) in Mt. Hope from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In the evening, you can be tested in Smithers at the Gateway Center (2 Greyhound Lane) from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

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Anna Saunders is a weekend reporter for WOAY. With a diploma from Princeton Senior High School and a mother from Fayette County, she is no stranger to the area. She received a degree in Media Arts and Design from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and wanted to return home to start her career as a reporter.