Richmond’s positivity rate is concerning, health officials say


RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney was joined by Dr. Melissa Viray with Richmond City Health District and Richmond Public Schools Superintendent Jason Kamras this afternoon during a COVID-19 update.

The Virginia Department of Health is reporting that Richmond has 3,248 cases of COVID-19. 315 people have been hospitalized and 41 have died from the virus.

People in their 20s make up 803 of Richmond’s cases.

Mayor Stoney is urging people to continue to get tested if they feel like they might have come in contact with anyone with coronavirus. Stoney said this will make people around you more comfortable.

Dr. Melissa Viray provided Richmond with two updates. One that the Virginia Department of Health has rolled out their COVIDWISE app in partnership with Google. The COVIDWISE app helps users know if they have come into contact with someone with COVID-19.

“The effectiveness of this app in decreasing the transmission and allowing people to know they have been exposed to pursue testing and get to quarantine, depends on how many people use it,” Dr. Viray said.

As of Tuesday at midnight, Dr. Viray said over 305,000 people have downloaded the app.

Dr. Viray said that overall Virginia is holding stable or perhaps even decreasing.

“In Richmond, we aren’t seeing a surge but I continue to be concerned around the slow but steady increases we have been seeing in our cases,” Dr. Viray said.

The city’s current positivity rate is 8.6 percent.

Dr. Viray, like Stoney, is also urging people to pursue testing if they feel like they have been exposed.

“It continues to be critical that we adhere to social distancing, wearing our face coverings,” Dr. Viray emphasized.

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