DCDHHS COVID-19 Update #53 | Tuesday, October 20, 2020

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

DCDHHS COVID-19 Update #53
Tuesday, October 20, 2020
9:30 a.m.

Dare County COVID-19 Case Update

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

Since the last Dare County DHHS Update issued Friday, October 16, 2020, there have been 14 new positive cases. Of these 14 cases, 11 are residents and 3 are non-residents. The Dare County website has already been updated to reflect all of these cases.

Of the 11 resident cases since Friday, October 16th:

  • 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 3 non-resident cases since Friday, October 16th:

  • 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 2 – 14 days.

This past week Dare County saw the largest number of new positive cases, 42, since the week of July 27th. 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. As more people are now interacting more with other people, it is 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 we review the 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 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

We 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 our website, we are partnering with Mako Medical Laboratories to host another testing on Thursday, November 5, 2020 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 November 5th 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.

Communications and Information Sharing

Dare County DHHS has an established schedule of communication to share information regarding COVID-19. On Tuesdays, we release a written update and a video update which includes an overview of the previous week’s COVID-19 key metrics is issued. 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.