DCDHHS’ COVID-19 Update #2

DCDHHS’ COVID-19 Update #2
Thursday, May 21, 2020
12:15 p.m.

 North Carolina moves into Safer at Home Phase 2 Tomorrow

Yesterday in a press conference, Governor Roy Cooper announced North Carolina would be moving into Safer at Home Phase 2 on Friday, May 22 at 5 p.m. After two weeks in Phase 1, the state’s overall key indicators remain stable but the continued increases in daily case counts signal a need to take a more modest step forward in Phase 2 than originally envisioned. The phase runs through at least Friday, June 26 unless changed or canceled. Some key changes include:

  • Phase 2 lifts the Stay At Home order moving into a Safer At Home recommendation, especially for people at high risk for serious illness. Teleworking is also urged when possible.
  • Mass gathering limits in Phase 2 will be no more than 10 people indoors or 25 people outdoors in most circumstances. These limits apply to the following: event venues; conference centers; stadiums and sports arenas; amphitheaters; and groups at parks or beaches.
  • Some businesses will remain closed in Phase 2 including: bars; night clubs; gyms and indoor fitness facilities; indoor entertainment venues such as movie theaters, and bowling alleys.
  • Certain businesses will be open at limited capacity with other requirements and recommendations including: restaurants (see guidance) are to limit the number of customers in indoor and outdoor seating areas (See Executive Order 141) along and adherence with distancing and cleaning requirements; personal care businesses, including salons and barbers, at 50% capacity with distancing and cleaning requirements; pools at 50% capacity with distancing and cleaning requirements. Employees of personal care businesses (grooming, massage, and tattoo businesses) will be required to wear face coverings and put at least six feet of distance between customers at 50 percent reduced occupancy.
  • Indoor and outdoor pools can open with 50 percent reduced occupancy while following specific public health requirements
  • Childcare facilities, day camps and overnight camps are allowed to be open with enhanced cleaning and screening requirements. Retail businesses allowed to open in Phase 1 at 50% capacity will continue at that level.
  • Public health recommendations are provided for worship services to practice enhanced social distancing and other cleaning and hygiene practices.

More information on Safer at Home Phase 2 can be found in Executive Order 141 or in Frequently Asked Questions about Executive Order 141.

Drive-thru Testing Event Update

Currently, 179 appointments have been scheduled and there are only 21 appointments still available for Drive-thru testing on May 26, 2020 in the parking lot at First Flight High School. An announcement will be made by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 with details about the next event.

Dare County Department of Health & Human Services and Dare County Schools have received communications regarding concern over the event location overlapping with students returning textbooks and Chromebooks at First Flight High School. The schedule has been adjusted and students will not be returning Chromebooks on the days that drive-thru testing is being offered. Additionally, the hours of the First Flight Elementary School meal program have been adjusted to 11:00-12:30 so that there will be no traffic congestion between the meal program and the testing program. The drive-thru testing event will take place in a separate parking lot at the high school and all individuals being tested will remain in their vehicles. There will be no interaction between the drive-thru testing event and school personnel or students.

A map is being provided to show the location of the drive-thru testing event which will be held in the student parking lot and as noted, all testing participants will remain in their vehicles at all times. We do not anticipate traffic concerns given appointments are required for the drive-thru testing. We expect to see approximately 36 vehicles per hour which will arrive throughout the hour in 5-minute increments.

Count on Me NC Program

North Carolina’s restaurants, hotels, attractions, and businesses can participate in Count On Me NC – a mutual pledge and public health initiative that empowers guests and businesses to help keep everyone safe and protected.

Guests can do their part by taking a pledge to create a safer, healthier environment for everyone by following guidelines and best practices including practicing the three W’s. Wear. Wait. Wash. 

Businesses can become a “Count on Me NC” business by taking COVID-19 training developed by public health officials and food safety experts. The free online courses are designed to provide a consistent approach based on state and national guidelines. Currently, restaurant training modules are available for Owner/Manager, Front of House, and Back of House. Additional training for cleaning staff and other businesses will be added soon. After completing the training, businesses will receive a certificate for display, access to a social media toolkit for the promotion of their businesses’ efforts, and a business listing on countonmenc.org.

COVID-19 Numbers Update

In North Carolina, there are currently 20,910 cases of COVID-19 in 100 counties. There have been 716 fatalities in NC associated with COVID-19. Currently, the state is reporting 578 hospitalizations across the state from COVID-19 illness.

The number of positive COVID-19 tests in Dare County has remained at 22 for the past 7 days. Of those 22 Dare County cases, 19 have recovered or are asymptomatically cleared, 1 died and 2 are active. Of the 2 active, 1 is hospitalized and 1 is recovering in home isolation. For the most up to date information on COVID-19 cases in Dare County and the State of North Carolina, visit  darenc.com/covid19.