MARTINSBURG, W.Va. (WDVM) — The Berkeley County Council met Thursday to update its COVID-19 protocols. But yet another public health concern is attracting the council’s attention.
It’s the fastest growing county in West Virginia and is concerned about public health data placing it as the county with the most positive COVID-19 cases of all 55 counties in the Mountain State. But at its first recent non-virtual county council meeting, public health officials brought to the council’s attention another serious concern. There has been a spike in overdose incidents corresponding with the pandemic. It is adding to the case load at the county’s treatment centers.
Council Vice Chair Dan Dulyea says “resource recovery centers are reopening so that we can provide the services and handle the spike in the overdoses.”
Meanwhile, the county is trying to keep its economy on track, seeing a ray of hope as restrictions on business activity — within proper social distancing guidelines — are loosened.
Doug E. Copenhaver, Jr. is council president and says “we don’t want anybody to fail. When businesses fail, people lose jobs. We want to keep everybody working as much as possible. The Council has tried to do our best and I think, in general, we have done that. We’re trying to get things back to normal.”
Council Vice President Dulyea is focusing on the spike in drug overdoses. He is in touch with the county day report center on a regular basis. Both he and President Copenhaver want testing to be widely available. And they both are working with businesses in the county to get them back on their feet after weeks of having to close their doors.
Though the county is closing in on near 200 cases testing positive for COVID-19, almost three quarters of them have made a complete recovery.
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