Dare Reports 13th Death; 41 New COVID-19 Cases Feb. 16-22

Posted By on February 23, 2021

The Dare County Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reports another local resident death from COVID-19 complications last week, though the county’s COVID-19 data continues to trend in the right direction, with 41 new cases in the past seven days, Feb. 16-22. This marks the 13th death of an Outer Banks resident due to complications from COVID-19.

Specifically, there were only 37 new positive cases last week. This is the lowest it has been since the beginning of October 2020. Additionally, the percent of positive tests to total tests for this past week decreased from 10.9% to 8.2%. While these numbers are looking much better, we all still need to remain vigilant. Please continue to do what we know works to control the spread by following the 3Ws: Wear a face covering, wait 6 ft apart and wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer.

From Feb. 16 through Feb. 22, there were 41 new COVID-19 cases. Of these 41 new cases:

  • 28 (68%) are symptomatic

  • 32 (78%) acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual or individuals who were positive for COVID-19.

The total COVID-19 positive case count in Dare County is 2756, of which there are 46 active cases among residents of Dare County. Currently, eight residents are hospitalized due to complications from COVID-19. Sadly, one resident death was reported last week.

COVID-19 Vaccine

The DHHS was speechless last Thursday when they were informed that the state was going to provide Dare with 100 of the 3,000 doses requested for a local Mega Vaccine Event. The DHHS will continue to advocate for more doses and stand prepared to vaccinate approximately 3,000 individuals per week when the vaccine allotment increases. For the next three weeks, the DHHS will receive a standard allocation from the state of 500 first doses per week. This week, they will provide 600 first doses since they received the extra 100 doses from the event request.

The DHHS continues to ask for everyone’s patience with the vaccine roll out. Their ability to vaccinate everyone who wishes to be vaccinated is completely dependent on local vaccine allocation from the state.  Over the past seven weeks, the DHHS has administered 7,798 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in Dare County and 4,521 second doses.

The limited vaccine allotment is only related to first doses. The DHHS has not been informed that there are any issues with second dose allotments. All second dose appointments remain as scheduled.

There are currently 2,206 individuals aged 65 and over on our vaccine waiting list. Starting on Wednesday, Feb. 24th, in accordance with the state’s vaccination prioritization phases, the DHHS will begin accepting registrations for school and day care personnel. All eligible individuals who register for the vaccine are placed on the waiting list in order of when they registered. For anyone who has completed a registration form online and no longer needs an appointment, please email us at [email protected] to remove your name from the waiting list. This will help us be as efficient as possible when calling people to schedule appointments.

Information on COVID-19 vaccinations in Dare County can be found at www.darenc.com/covidvaccine.  General information on the COVID-19 vaccines can be found on the state’s website www.covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vaccines.

The DHHS has been informed by the state that the Walgreens locations in Dare County are participating in the federal COVID-19 vaccination program and have started receiving a limited number of doses weekly. The vaccines provided to Walgreens are not part of the state’s allocations. Please go to www.walgreens.com for more information on their COVID-19 vaccine program.

Key Metrics

This past week, there were 451 COVID-19 diagnostic tests reported in Dare County. This brings the total number of tests performed since early March to 33,237. There were 37 positive cases between February 15 and February 21. The percent of positive tests to overall tests in Dare County since testing started in early March decreased to 8.27%. The percent of positive tests to total tests for the past week decreased to 8.20%. Syndromic surveillance of individuals presenting with COVID like symptoms to the emergency department and urgent care centers, showed low levels of activity. These graphs can be found on the dare county website at www.darenc.com/covid19.

“Non-resident” cases are those who do not have a Dare County address listed on their identification card, including visitors, non-resident property owners, individuals living and working in Dare County for the summer, and those who may have recently moved to the area and have not yet been able to update their identification card.

Cloth face masks or coverings are mandatory to be worn in any public spaces where social distancing can’t be maintained in Dare County and throughout North Carolina.

Local and state health officials continue to strongly encourage everyone to follow the 3 Ws – wear a cloth face covering if you will be with other people, wait at least six feet apart and avoid close contact with other people, and wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer. 

In addition, there is currently a statewide executive order for everyone to stay at home from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. each night, unless they are at work during those hours, which will remain in effect until Friday, Feb. 26, 2021.


Posted by Matt Artz

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