Dare County experiences highest COVID-19 case count since July

Over the past week, Dare County saw the largest number of new positive COVID-19 cases, 42, since the week of July 27.

“While we are still seeing the majority of spread occurring from direct contact, we are seeing some new cases linked with community transmission, meaning the individuals do not know how they acquired the virus,” the Dare County Department of Health and Human Services said in a news release this morning.

The total positive case count in Dare County as of Tuesday is 637, of which there are 28 active cases among county residents. Of the total cases, 355 are residents and 282 are non-residents. Currently, one resident remains hospitalized due to COVID-19 complications.

Since the last Dare County update issued Friday, there have been 14 new positive cases. Of these, 11 are residents and three are non-residents.

Of the 11 resident cases since Friday:

  • 1 individual is asymptomatic and acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual who tested positive outside of Dare County.
  • 2 of the cases are family members. Both are symptomatic and acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual whose positive test result was reported on 10/16
  • 4 of the cases are not connected. 3 are symptomatic and 1 is asymptomatic. It is unclear how these individuals acquired the virus.
  • 3 of the cases are symptomatic and acquired the virus from direct contact with an individual whose positive test result was reported on 10/16
  • 1 individual is symptomatic and acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual whose positive test result was reported on 10/15.

Of the three non-resident cases since Friday:

  • 1 individual is symptomatic and acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual who tested positive outside of Dare County.
  • 2 of the cases are not connected. Both are symptomatic. It is unclear how these individuals acquired the virus.

Contact tracing has been completed on all of the new cases and direct contacts provided by these individuals have been identified, notified, and directed to quarantine for 14 days from the last date of exposure with the positive case. The 14-day quarantine requirement is very important to slowing the spread of the virus as the incubation period for this virus is two to 14 days.

Health officials say the rise in cases makes it critically important to follow the 3Ws to help reduce the spread COVID-19. The 3Ws are the most effective tools we have to protect ourselves, our family and our community. Please,

  • Wear a cloth face covering if you will be with other people.
  • Wait 6 feet apart. Avoid close contact.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer.

Key Metrics

Each week health review the four key metrics associated with disease investigation and surveillance. The metrics are:

  • Number of Tests
  • Confirmed Cases
  • Positive Tests as a Percent of Total Tests

COVID Like Illness Surveillance

This past week there were 716 COVID-19 diagnostic tests performed in Dare County. This brings the total number of tests performed since early March to 14,959. There were 42 positive cases between October 12 and October 18. The percent of positive tests to overall tests in Dare County since we started testing in early March increased slightly this week at 4.22%. The percent of positive tests to total tests for the past week alone increased to 5.87%. Syndromic surveillance of the emergency department and the urgent care centers showed moderate numbers of individuals presenting with COVID-19 related symptoms, consistent with the activity from the past several weeks. These graphs can be found on the dare county website at www.darenc.com/covid19.

Testing

Health officials strongly encourage anyone who is experiencing symptoms to be tested as well as anyone who may have come into contact with someone who has COVID-19. Testing is widely available in Dare County. Please visit www.darenc.com/covidtesting for details on testing locations .

In addition to the testing locations provided on the website, Dare County is partnering with Mako Medical Laboratories to host another testing on Thursday, Nov. 5, at the Nags Head Event site located at 6800 S. Croatan Hwy in Nags Head. This testing event will offer drive through diagnostic testing for ages 5 and older. The diagnostic test indicates whether an individual has a current COVID-19 infection.

To schedule an appointment for the testing event, please call 252.475.5008. The call center is open Monday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Participants registering for the community testing events are required to send a photocopy of their government-issued identification card and insurance card prior to the event.

If you have questions about testing or locations please visit www.darenc.com/covidtesting or call the COVID-19 call center, open Monday – Friday from 8:30 am – 5 pm at 252-475-5008.

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About Kari Pugh 801 Articles
Kari Pugh is digital director for OBXToday.com, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, 94.5 WCMS and News Talk 92.3 WZPR. Reach her at [email protected]