DCDHHS COVID-19 Update #141
Tuesday, March 8, 2022
Dare County COVID-19 Case Update
The total number of new laboratory-confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 reported in Dare County over the past week was 32. Currently, based on reported positive cases, there are 16 active cases of COVID-19 among residents of Dare County. There are 5 residents hospitalized due to complications related to COVID-19. Of the 5 hospitalized resident cases, 2 are between 50 and 64 years old and three are over 65 years old. None are vaccinated.
The number of positive cases reported and the number of tests reported have steadily declined over the past few weeks. These figures do not include home tests as these tests are not reportable.
CDC COVID-19 Community Levels
Last week, the CDC announced changes to its measurements and definitions of county-level COVID-19 classifications of community transmission.
With the current high levels of vaccination and high levels of population immunity to vaccination and infections, the risk of medically significant illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19 is significantly reduced for most people. At the same time, some people and communities, such as the elderly, immunocompromised people and people with disabilities, are at higher risk of serious illness and must make difficult decisions to navigate a world with COVID-19.
The CDC now uses the combination of three measures – new COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 population in the past 7 days, the percentage of hospital beds occupied by COVID-19 patients, and the total number of new COVID cases. -19 per 100,000 population in the last 7 days – to determine the COVID-19 community level. New COVID-19 admissions and the percentage of occupied inpatient beds represent the current potential for pressure on the healthcare system. Data on new cases act as an early warning indicator of potential increases in strain on the healthcare system in the event of a COVID-19 surge.
Using this data, the community level of COVID-19 is categorized as low, medium, or high.
Dare County is now classified as a low (or green) level of COVID-19 community transmission.
More information on CDC’s COVID-19 levels is available at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/science/community-levels.html.
Dare COVID Vaccinations
Everyone 5 years of age and older is encouraged to get vaccinated against COVID-19. COVID-19 vaccines are readily available at many locations around the county, including the Department of Health and many area pharmacies like: Walgreens, CVS, Sunshine Family Pharmacy, Island Pharmacy, Bear Drugs, and Beach Pharmacy.
People 5 years and older should get vaccinated whether or not you have ever had COVID-19. That’s because experts don’t yet know how long you’re protected from a new disease after recovering from COVID-19. Even if you have already recovered from COVID-19, you may become infected again with the virus that causes COVID-19. Studies have shown that vaccination strongly increases the protection of people who have recovered from COVID-19. If you have been treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you must wait 90 days before receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor if you’re unsure about the treatments you’ve received or have other questions about getting a COVID-19 vaccine.
Since late December 2020, a total of 28,067 (76%) Dare County residents have received an initial dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, 26,871 (73%) individuals have been vaccinated with a two-dose mRNA series or one dose or J&J, a total of 14,014 (38%) received booster doses.
COVID-19 Booster Dose Information
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has recommended booster vaccines for people ages 12 and older to strengthen and extend protections against COVID-19. If you received the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, you can receive your booster dose five months after your second injection. If you have received the J&J vaccine, you can receive your booster two months after your injection.
The CDC has recommended that immunocompromised people receive three injections as part of their initial series, followed by a fourth injection as a booster. People 12 years and older who are moderately or severely immunocompromised should receive a total of 4 doses of COVID-19 vaccine. The 4 doses consist of a primo series of 3 doses of a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine, plus 1 booster of a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine (4th dose). Please consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions about getting a booster dose.
The Dare County Department of Health and Human Services offers Moderna and Pfizer booster shots. You can call your local pharmacy or call our Clinical Services team at 252.475.5003 (select option 2, leave a message if you reach voicemail) to register for an immunization appointment,
For more information or questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and booster doses, please visit www.darenc.com/COVIDvaccine
Each week, we review key metrics associated with disease investigation and surveillance. The CDC has dropped the percent positivity measure for COVID-19 cases. With the widespread availability and use of non-reportable home testing, percent positivity is no longer a valid measure of community transmission levels. Going forward we will report on 3 key metrics, the metrics are:
Last week, 242 COVID-19 diagnostic tests were reported in Dare County. This brings the total number of tests reported since early March last year to 72,632. There were 32 positive cases between February 28 and March 6. Syndromic surveillance of people with COVID-like symptoms in the emergency room and urgent care has decreased. These graphs can be viewed on the Dare County website at www.darenc.com/covid19.
Communications and Information Sharing
Dare County DHHS has established a communication schedule to share information regarding COVID-19. Every Tuesday, a written update that includes key COVID-19 metrics from the previous week is released. Additional updates will be released as needed. All posted videos and written updates can be found on our website, the DHHS Facebook page, the Dare County Twitter page, and the Dare Emergency Management Twitter page. If you would like to receive these updates directly by email, please sign up to receive our notifications.
Weekly positive cases will be updated on the dashboard and on our website and shared on the DHHS facebook page each Monday. 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.
We encourage you to stay informed by visiting www.darenc.com/covid19 or visiting the CDC or NC DHHS websites. If you have specific needs or questions, you can also call the Dare County COVID-19 Call Center open Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at 252.475.5008.