N.C. tops 8,000 daily new cases of COVID-19; more local vaccine rollout plans set

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reported the state’s highest one-day number of COVID-19 cases with 8,444 new cases on Friday, doubling a record day reported just one month ago.

“I am very worried for our state. Everyone must act right now to protect each other,” said NCDHHS Secretary Dr. Mandy K. Cohen.

“Do not wait until it’s you or your loved sick with COVID-19 to wear a mask, wait apart from others and wash your hands often,” Cohen said. Do not wait until it’s you or your loved one alone in a hospital bed. Do not wait until you’ve lost a loved one to this pandemic. Take personal responsibility for you, your loved ones and your community now.”

Albemarle Regional Health Services, which runs health departments for Currituck and seven other counties in northeastern North Carolina, is collaborating with Sentara Albemarle Medical Center and Vidant Health to prepare for the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to arrive in the region.

“ARHS has received word from the state that, upon FDA approval of the Moderna vaccine, we are scheduled to receive approximately 4,000 doses in our eight-county region that will be allotted for Phase 1A as early as next week, the week of December 21,” said ARHS Health Director R. Battle Betts, Jr.

The first phase under state and federal guidance includes health care workers at high risk for exposure to COVID-19 – doctors, nurses, and all who interact and care for patients with COVID-19, including those who clean areas used by patients, and those giving vaccines to these workers.

Also included Phase 1A are long-Term care staff and residents, including those in skilled nursing facilities and in adult, family and group homes.

Dare County Health and Human Services has been informed by the state that it may be receiving the first allotment of vaccine for Priority 1a healthcare workers sometime next week.

“We have been working this week on enrolling these eligible area healthcare providers in the state’s vaccine registry,” health officials said in a Friday update.

Visit the Dare County website vaccine specific webpage for the most up to date information on the COVID-19 vaccine in Dare County. The webpage can be found at www.darenc.com/covidvaccine

Dare County currently reports eight residents hospitalized with coronavirus and a total of 87 active cases.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020, there have been 42 new positive cases. Of these 42 cases, 29 are residents and 13 are non-residents. Non-residents are individuals who do not have a permanent Dare County address listed on their license or identification card. This includes individuals who live in nearby counties, individuals who are temporarily living in Dare County for work or other related purposes, and visitors. The Dare County website has already been updated to reflect all of these cases.

Since Tuesday, Dare County has seen er 42 new positive cases, 29 among residents and 13 among non-residents.

Of the 29 new resident cases:

  • 16 of the cases are not connected. 15 are symptomatic and 1 is asymptomatic. All acquired the virus by direct contact with individuals whose positive test results were reported between 12/8  and 12/15

  • 5 of the cases are not connected. All are symptomatic and acquired the virus by direct contact with individuals who tested positive outside of Dare County.

  • 8 of the cases are not connected. 7 are symptomatic and 1 is asymptomatic. It is unclear how these individuals acquired the virus.

Of the 13 new non-resident cases:

  • 9 of the cases are not connected. 5 are symptomatic and 4 are asymptomatic. All acquired the virus by direct contact with individuals who tested positive outside of Dare County.

  • 4 of the cases are not connected. 3 are symptomatic and 1 is asymptomatic. It is unclear how these individuals acquired the virus.

Contact tracing has been completed on 36 new cases and direct contacts provided by these individuals have been identified, notified, and directed to quarantine. Health officials are working with the other six individuals to identify and notify their direct contacts.

This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.