Stanly has 320 confirmed coronavirus cases

Published 4:27 pm Friday, June 26, 2020

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Coronavirus cases continue to climb both in Stanly County and also across the state.

The county health department reported 12 new cases Friday morning, bringing the total to 320, along with five deaths. The current tally is a roughly 57 percent increase from a week ago, when there were only 204 reported cases. There were 102 cases the weekend before.

Of the total, 192 individuals have recovered and there are 123 active cases.

A majority of the cases, 223, have been transmitted through human to human contact, while 73 have been transmitted through community spread. Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, community spread means people have been infected with the virus in an area, including some who are not sure how or where they became infected.

While part of the rapid increase can be attributed to more widespread testing in the county, more people have been leaving their homes due to nice weather and relaxed state restrictions, which has likely resulted in more cases, health officials said.

Any type of group gathering increases the chance of the virus spreading, especially if people aren’t properly social distancing or wearing face coverings.

According to county-specific data from the state’s Department of Health and Human Services, which is compiled by the county health department, the highest daily total of reported cases was June 22, when the county had 43 new cases.

According to data, white people in the county accounted for 63 percent of all cases, followed by black people at 29 percent and Asians at 5 percent. There are missing demographic data, including 76 cases of unknown race. The state listed only 315 cases as of Friday afternoon.

Males in the county accounted for 54 percent of the cases and Hispanics account for 28 percent of cases.

People ages 25 to 49 have accounted for 43 percent of all cases followed by people 50 to 64, who have accounted for 25. Though senior citizens are the most likely group to die from the virus, only 7 percent of people both 65-74 and those 75 and up have contracted the virus.

The state data also indicates that of the county’s five deaths, all of them have been at least 50 and older and three were females.

There have also been several outbreaks in congregate living settings. An outbreak in these settings is defined by the state as two or more laboratory-confirmed cases.

Albemarle Correctional Institution has recently undergone mass testing and has found that 61 inmates have contracted the virus. An additional 12 staff members have tested positive and all but one has recovered and returned to work.

The health department confirmed a new outbreak occurred this week at Stanly Manor, but gave no details regarding how many people were infected. A spokesperson for Atrium Health, which owns Stanly Manor, has not returned a request for comment.

Bethany Woods Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Woodhaven Court Assisted Living and Memory Care and Spring Arbor Assisted Living in Albemarle, along with two Monarch group homes, have also had residents or staff contract the virus.

Gov. Roy Cooper earlier this week announced a statewide mask mandate for all people indoors and outdoors where social distancing is not possible. The mandate takes effect Friday at 5 p.m.

People with certain medical conditions, children under 11 and people exercising where social distancing is possible will not be required to wear face coverings.

Local law enforcement can cite businesses for violating the mandate. If a customer or employee refuses to wear a mask, officers can enforce trespassing laws.

Cooper also extended Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan an additional three weeks — until at least July 17 — due to the increase number of cases.

At least 58,818 people in North Carolina have tested positive for the coronavirus (including 1,635 on Friday) and 1,297 have died, according to data from the state’s Department of Health and Human Services. More than 836,725 tests have been completed, with 10 percent coming back positive.
Counties around Stanly have also seen sharp increases in cases. Mecklenburg leads the state with almost 10,000 cases, while Rowan crossed the 1,000 case threshold earlier this week. Union also has more than 1,000 cases while Cabarrus, with 983, will soon pass the 1,000 mark.
Hospitalizations across the state have continued to increase over the past month. At least 892 coronavirus patients were in hospitals on Friday, with 91 percent of the state’s hospitals reporting — a slight decline from Tuesday’s highest one-day total of 915 patients.
Roughly 20 percent of the state’s 21,222 licensed inpatient hospital beds are empty while about 17 percent of the 3,223 ICU beds are empty as of Friday. Also 26 percent of the total ventilators in the state are in use.
Similar to the data in Stanly, people ages 25 to 49 across North Carolina have accounted for 45 percent of all cases, yet only account for 5 percent of deaths. For senior citizens, it’s the opposite: those 75 and older account for only 6 percent of all cases yet make up 60 percent of all deaths.

The United States leads the world with more than 2.4 million cases and almost 124,000 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

About Chris Miller

Chris Miller has been with the SNAP since January 2019. He is a graduate of NC State and received his Master's in Journalism from the University of Maryland. He previously wrote for the Capital News Service in Annapolis, where many of his stories on immigration and culture were published in national papers via the AP wire.

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