DCDHHS’ COVID-19 Update #23 | Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Dare County Department of Health & Human Services, COVID-19 Update

DCDHHS’ COVID-19 Update #23
Tuesday, July 21, 2020
3:30 p.m.

Dare County COVID-19 Case Update

The number of positive COVID-19 tests in Dare County is 277, 59 of which are considered active. Of the 277 cases, 162 are residents and 115 are non-residents.

The majority of cases continue to experience mild to moderate symptoms, however there are cases which have experienced severe illness. Currently, two residents remain hospitalized in critical condition.

Since the last Dare County DHHS Update issued, Friday, July 17, 2020 there have been 31 new positive cases. Of these 31 cases, 22 are residents and 9 are non-residents. The Dare County website has already been updated to reflect all of these cases. You may notice some of the wording on our dashboard has changed. We have received questions about how cases are counted and reported. When an individual initially tests positive, this is recorded as a positive case. If that individual goes for re-testing and tests positive again, that result is not counted as another positive case. There is no double counting of positive results for the same individual.

There are 22 new resident cases since Friday, July 17th: 

  • 1 of the cases is a symptomatic family member of an individual whose positive test result was reported on 7/15
  • 1 of the cases is an asymptomatic family member of an individual whose positive test result was reported on 7/9
  • 4 of the cases are close friends, 3 asymptomatic and 1 symptomatic, who acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual whose positive test result was reported on 7/17
  • 2 of the cases are symptomatic family members of an individual whose positive test result was reported on 7/15
  • 2 of the cases are symptomatic family members who acquired the virus by direct contact whose positive result was reported on 7/13
  • 9 of the cases are close contacts, all symptomatic, who acquired the virus from an individual whose positive test result was reported on 7/17
  • 3 of the cases are not connected, 2 symptomatic and 1 asymptomatic. It is unclear how these individuals acquired the virus, which indicates community spread.

 There have been 9 new non-resident cases since Friday, July 17th:

  • 2 of the cases are family members, both symptomatic, acquired the virus by direct contact with other family members whose positive test results were reported on 7/16
  • 2 of the cases is symptomatic and is a household contact of an individual whose positive test result was reported on 7/13
  • 5 of the cases are not connected, 4 symptomatic and 1 asymptomatic, all who most likely acquired the virus by community spread outside of Dare County.

Contract tracing has been completed on 30 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.

Reducing the Spread

We continue to see growing cases of COVID-19 in Dare County. The majority of cases are occurring because of direct contact in social circles or households. We are seeing friends spreading the virus to friends as well as family members spreading it to family members. There is also an indication of community spread since some individuals are unaware of how they acquired the virus. This number of individuals contracting  the virus through community spread, however, is lower compared to those who acquired the virus by direct contact with an individual who had previously tested positive.

Please follow the  3Ws to reduce the spread of COVID-19. The 3Ws are proven tools to help protect you, your family, and our community. Wear, Wait and Wash.

  • 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

Testing

We will be partnering with Mako Medical Laboratories to host another testing clinic on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 starting at 1:00 p.m. at Dare County Center located at 950 Marshall Collins Drive, Manteo NC. Individuals can register for an appointment for the diagnostic test, the antibody test, or both. Registration is required.

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

Key Metrics

Dare County DHHS monitors and evaluates 4 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 1026 COVID-19 diagnostic tests performed in Dare County (767 performed by local healthcare providers and 259 performed at the community testing clinic on July 14th). This brings the total number of tests performed since early March to 5,573.  We had 54 positive cases between July 13 and July 19. The percent of positive tests to overall tests in Dare County since we started testing in early March increased again this week to 4.66%. The percent positive to total test for the past week alone was 5.3%. The syndromic surveillance of individuals who presented to the emergency department showed an increase from last week of the number of patients presenting with COVID like symptoms. Local urgent care centers also saw a high number of patients presenting with COVID like symptoms.  These graphs can be found on the dare county website at www.darenc.com/covid19

Communications and Information Sharing

Dare County DHHS has an established schedule of communication to share information regarding COVID-19. On Tuesdays, a written update and a video update which includes an overview of the previous week’s COVID-19 key metrics is issued, and on Fridays a written update is issued. All released videos and written updates can be found on our website, DHHS facebook page, Dare County Twitter page, and Dare Emergency Management Twitter page. If you would like to receive these updates directly to your email, please sign up to receive our enotifications.

New positive cases are updated on the dashboard on our website and shared on the DHHS facebook page when we receive them. To find the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 cases in Dare County visit www.darenc.com/covid19. State COVID-19 data is available at https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/dashboard.

Contact Us

We encourage you to stay informed by visiting www.darenc.com/covid19 or by visiting the CDC or NC DHHS websites. If you have specific needs or questions you may also call the Dare County COVID-19 call center open Monday-Friday from 8:30 to 5:00 at 252.475.5008.