Dare Reports 16 COVID-19 Cases May 10-17; Lowest Since June 2020
The Dare County Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reports 16 new cases of COVID-19 May 3-11.
This week’s COVID-19 update includes very promising news. The total number of new positive cases last week was 13, the lowest it has been since the week of June 15, 2020. Likewise, the percent of new positive cases to total cases for the past week alone was 3.89%, also the lowest weekly percent since June of 2020.
Since the last report on 5/11, there have been 16 new COVID-19 cases. Of these 16 new cases:
12 (76%) are symptomatic
14 (90%) acquired the virus by direct contact with an unvaccinated individual or individuals who were positive for COVID-19.
Currently, there are only 6 active COVID-19 cases among residents of Dare County.
NC Mask and Social Distancing Changes
This past Friday, Governor Cooper announced that NC would no longer have a mask mandate. This follows a similar announcement from the CDC earlier in the week that masks were no longer required for fully vaccinated individuals. North Carolina’s decision to lift the mask mandate, regardless of vaccination status, was because it is not feasible to regulate mask wearing for the unvaccinated. There are certain places in NC where masks are still required, regardless of vaccination status. These include: schools, day care centers, public transportation, jails and detention centers, and healthcare facilities. Additionally, businesses may elect to require patrons to still wear a mask. Non-vaccinated individuals are strongly encouraged to wear a mask to protect others from potential spread of the virus. Please be kind and respectful to those who choose to continue to wear masks as there are many reasons individuals may choose to continue to wear a mask.
While the mask mandate has been lifted in NC, and the indoor and outdoor crowd gathering restrictions have been eliminated, please understand the virus is still present in our community and remains highly contagious. The best way for our community to stay protected from the COVID-19 virus is for people to get vaccinated.
COVID-19 vaccinations are readily available at numerous locations throughout the county including the health department and many area pharmacies like: Walgreens, Sunshine Family Pharmacy, Island Pharmacy, Bear Drugs, and Beach Pharmacy.
Since late December, Dare DHHS has provided 15,955 initial doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and have fully vaccinated 16,469 individuals. In addition to preventing serious illness and death, getting your COVID-19 vaccine prevents you from being quarantined if you are exposed to a person who tests positive for COVID-19, as long as you remain symptom free. While there have been 5 breakthrough cases of COVID-19 reported in Dare County, there have been no reports of serious illness or death of anyone in Dare who has been fully vaccinated.
COVID Communication Updates
Moving forward, the DHHS will continue to release a weekly written COVID-19 update on Tuesdays, and will update the COVID-19 Case Dashboard and Vaccine Dashboard on a weekly basis also on Tuesdays. Video updates will be provided as needed when there are significant changes in data, Covid practices, and/or guidelines. Contact tracing, including notifications of isolation and quarantines, will continue on a daily basis.
This past week there were 335 COVID-19 diagnostic tests reported in Dare County. This brings the total number of tests performed since early March of last year to 39,157. There were 13 positive cases between May 10 and May 16. The percent of positive tests to overall tests in Dare County since testing started in March 2020 decreased to 8.16%. The percent of positive tests to total tests for the past week decreased to 3.89%. Syndromic surveillance of individuals presenting with COVID like symptoms to the emergency department and urgent care centers continues to show 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.