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Gov. Justice confident the state will hit vaccination goals

Updated: May. 17, 2021 at 2:55 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - While giving an update on the COVID-19 pandemic and West Virginia’s response, Gov. Jim Justice announced Monday that he ‘feels absolutely certain’ that 65 percent of those eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine will have at least one shot by June 20th.

On May 7, Gov. Justice sat June 20 as the target date for removing the state’s mask mandate. Now, that goal includes teenagers 12 years of age and up.

West Virginia Gov. Justice announces target date to remove mask mandate

Currently, 54.2 percent of West Virginians 12 years old and up have received one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

45.1 percent are now fully vaccinated against coronavirus.

However, on Friday Gov. Justice announced that West Virginia is now following the updated CDC guidance on masks allowing anyone who is fully vaccinated to remove their masks indoors and outdoors.

“I want you to understand wholeheartedly that this policy is based on the honor system,” said Gov. Justice. “So, I encourage all West Virginians to get their vaccine so they can no longer wear the mask.”

Gov. Justice did note that any private business may still require customers to wear a mask.

Gov. Justice called those who have ‘stepped up’ to get vaccinated ‘true patriots.’

Now that the COVID-19 vaccine is now eligible to 12 and 15-year-olds, 15 county school systems are scheduled to hold clinics this week.

All clinics will offer vaccines to all eligible West Virginians, not just those 12 to 15-years-old.

Gov. Justice also announced Monday that his administration is still working ‘toward finalizing all the wrinkles regarding the $100 savings bonds or the $100 gift certificates to everyone 16 to 35 years of age’ that received a COVID-19 vaccine. He also said he wants to include the 12 to 15-year-old age group into that incentive program now that they are eligible for the shot.

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