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West Virginia chemical-related hospital admissions rise

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w.va.waterEven as the last official water restrictions were lifted Saturday, more people were getting sick from exposure to the chemical that contaminated the Kanawha Valley's drinking water, according to numbers provided by a government official.

As of Saturday, a total of 411 patients had been treated at 10 hospitals for reported chemical exposure since Jan. 9, according to Allison Adler, a spokeswoman for the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. Twenty patients had been admitted to four hospitals. None of them are still in the hospital and none of them were in critical condition, Adler said.

Those numbers have increased significantly since Thursday, when the DHHR said 317 had been treated and 14 had been hospitalized.

The West Virginia Poison Center had received 2,302 calls about the chemical leak by Saturday evening, Adler said. Of those, 1,862 were human-related, 98 were animal-related and the rest were requests for information only.

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