The number of positive COVID-19 tests in Dare County is 60, 12 of which are considered active, with one individual remaining hospitalized and the other 11 in home isolation in Dare County.
Of the 60 cases, 29 are residents and 31 are non-residents. Since the last Dare County DHHS Update issued, Friday, June 19, 2020 there have been 16 new positive cases. Of these 16 cases, 2 are residents and 14 are non-residents.The Dare County website has already been updated to reflect all of these cases.
The 2 resident cases are not connected. They are both symptomatic and recovering in home isolation. It is believed these individuals acquired the virus through community spread as neither individual is aware how they contracted the virus.
Of the 14 nonresident cases:
- 5 are household contacts, two are symptomatic and three are asymptomatic, who acquired the virus by direct contact with another non-resident household member whose positive result was reported on 6/18.
- Two are siblings, both symptomatic, and acquired the virus by direct contact with a positive case outside of Dare County
- Three others are all symptomatic and acquired the virus through direct contact with individuals who tested positive outside of Dare County. None of these cases, however, are connected.
- All 10 of these cases have been transferred to their home counties and are in isolation in those counties.
- The remaining 4 of the 14 non-resident cases share a household. 2 individuals are symptomatic and 2 are asymptomatic. It is believed one of the individuals in the household acquired the virus through community spread or travel and then passed the virus to other 3 household members. These individuals are in home isolation in Dare County.
Non-Residents Testing and Contact Tracing
We are seeing a number of vacationers go to the area urgent care centers for COVID-19 testing while in Dare County because either they are symptomatic or they have been contacted by someone from back home who informed them they were a direct contact to a positive case.. When they are tested they immediately become classified as a PUI (person under investigation) and must quarantine for up to 14 days.
If the result comes back positive then we notify and inform them of the specific duration of their isolation period. We cannot force them to leave Dare County. Some choose to leave and some choose to stay. We call them every day while they remain in Dare County to check in on them and when they go home, we transfer their case to their home health department to finish out their isolation monitoring.
The day we call them to give them their positive result we also immediately start work on contact tracing which includes everyone in their house at the present time as well as any other contacts they may have had while in Dare County prior to testing or onset of symptoms. All direct contacts are notified they are to quarantine for 14 days and encouraged to get testing – right away if they have symptoms, or if they are asymptomatic they are asked to wait 6 days from their first day of exposure to be sure they don’t get a false negative.
Being in the same grocery store or at the same gas station as an individual who tests positive does not make you a direct contact. Being 6 ft or closer for 10 minutes or greater to an individual who tests positive makes you a direct contact. Since there are asymptomatic carriers of the virus we must all practice the 3Ws (wear, wait and wash) to protect ourselves and our families.
A total of 357 appointments have been booked for the COVID-19 Antibody & Diagnostic Testing Event on Tuesday, June 30, 2020 in Kill Devil Hills. Currently there are no appointments available for antibody testing. There are still diagnostic drive thru testing appointments available. 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. For more information on testing, please visit www.darenc.com/covidtesting. We will announce details about a second antibody testing clinic by Wednesday, July 1st.
Dare County DHHS monitors and evaluates 4 key metrics associates 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 had the highest number of COVID-10 diagnostic tests performed by healthcare providers in Dare County at 323 tests. This brings the total number of tests performed since early March to 1,991. We had 14 positive cases between June 15 and June 21. The percent of positive tests to overall tests in Dare County since we started testing in early March increased slightly this week to 2.46%. The percent positive to total test for the past week alone was 4.33%. The syndromic surveillance of individuals who presented to the emergency department with COVID-19 like symptoms last week remained low. These graphs can be found on the dare county website at www.darenc.com/covid19
Follow the 3Ws
Please do your part to slow the spread of the virus by following the 3Ws – – 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
While there is now a mandate in Dare County where individuals must wear a face covering when social distancing (being less than 6 ft away) cannot be maintained, there are individuals who have legitimate medical reasons and are not able to wear a face covering. We all need to be kind, show compassion and understanding.
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.
This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.