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Local cases plunge; U.S. death toll tops 500K

The country reached a devastating record at the beginning of this week when U.S. coronavirus deaths topped 500,000, but national and local trends, combined with the effectiveness of vaccines, have many citizens hopeful about the future.

Local COVID-19 numbers dropped significantly over the last week, with weekly case totals for the counties of Prince Edward, Buckingham, Cumberland, Charlotte and Lunenburg down a collective 66%.

From the week of Monday, Feb. 15, to the following Monday, Feb. 22, Prince Edward County, according to the Virginia Department of Health (VDH), experienced 16 new cases of COVID-19. That’s down from 66 cases the week prior.

Buckingham County also saw 16 new cases this week, down from 79 cases last week.

Cumberland County saw nine new coronavirus cases this week, down from last week’s figure of 19.

Charlotte County reported 19 cases this week, down from last week’s 32 cases.

Lunenburg saw 15 cases this week, down from 23 last week.

Overall cases in Virginia are also reaching record lows. On Monday the state was reporting 1,155 daily cases, a 25% decrease from last week’s figures. To find a time in which daily cases were similar in Virginia, one would have to go all the way back to Nov. 15 of 2020.

The state’s seven-day moving average is down too, reaching 1,962 as of Monday, a 34% decrease compared to the week prior.

As the number of reported virus cases decline, the number of vaccinated locals continues to increase each week.

Prince Edward County on Monday was reporting 3,792 of its residents had received at least one shot of the COVID-19 vaccine along with 737 people having received both doses. Prince Edward has now vaccinated 16.6% of its residents. That’s up from 13.8% last week.

Buckingham has now vaccinated 13.8% of its residents, or 2,362 people. That’s up from 11.9% as reported last week. Approximately 407 Buckingham citizens have received both doses of the vaccine.

In Cumberland, 8.5% of the population, or 842 people, have gotten at least one dose. Last week, the county had 6.6% of its population vaccinated. Approximately 174 Cumberland residents are now fully inoculated.

Charlotte County on Monday was listed as having at least one shot in the arm of 1,743 of its residents, or 14.7%. That’s up from 12.7% last week. Approximately 367 residents are fully vaccinated now.

In Lunenburg, 1,503 people have received at least one dose. The county has now vaccinated 12.3% of its population. That’s up from last week’s figure of 10.6%. At least 254 Lunenburg residents have received both doses of the vaccine.