Eastern panhandle state senator concerned about COVID-19 testing in region

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MARTINSBURG, W.Va. (WDVM) — With a spike in COVID-19 positive cases, West Virginia Governor Jim Justice has sent the National Guard to the region to help with stepped up testing.

Berkeley County reports the highest number of positive cases in the 55-county state. And Jefferson County ranks fourth. But State Senator John Unger questions the testing procedure and has heard from the local medical community about false negatives being as high as forty percent. Unger also questions the accuracy of data provided by state health officials. For the counties which border Maryland and Virginia, and are so close to Washington, D.C., he says the region cannot afford to have flaws in the testing procedure.

“The eastern panhandle is different than other parts of the state,” says Unger. “Other parts of the state have their unique qualities as well. But looking at the state as a one-size-fits-all is not the approach. We need to be looking at our area differently because of our unique geographical location.”

Unger adds with the state lifting restrictions and so many motorists on Interstate 81 this weekend, an accurate measurement of COVID-19 cases is a must.

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