Bertie prepares for COVID-19 spike

Published 5:27 pm Thursday, April 16, 2020

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WINDSOR – Bertie County is reporting four new confirmed cases of COVID-19, three of which are linked to a rehab center in Windsor.

At a meeting held Thursday, Bertie Emergency Services Director Mitch Cooper advised members of the county’s COVID-19 Taskforce that two patients and one staff member at Three Rivers Health & Rehabilitation Center have tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

Cooper added that additional cases could potentially be confirmed at this facility.

“The spread of any illness inside of a nursing home, or any setting where patients live in close quarters, is highly common,” Cooper said in a press release issued after the Taskforce meeting.

“All staff in similar facilities should continue to follow all personal protective equipment protocols. The public should continue to adhere to the stay at home order,” Cooper added.

In a statement received Thursday from Liberty Healthcare, the firm that owns Three Rivers, Yoel Balter, General Counsel, reported that “both of the residents are doing well, are without fever and neither has experienced respiratory distress. Each of these residents continues to be treated in-place and are isolated in private rooms on a designated hall of the facility.”

“Resident and staff safety is our top priority. We are closely monitoring all other residents and staff members at Three Rivers and have notified all staff and residents of the positive COVID-19 tests,” the statement continued.

Ashley Stoop, Director of Policy & Preparedness with Albemarle Regional Health Services (ARHS), noted that “[ARHS staff] have been working together with [Three Rivers] to provide our typical contact tracing and investigation, and [ARHS staff] has been very complimentary of the [Three Rivers facility] and coordination. We will continue to [address] follow up testing needs.”

The three cases at Three Rivers plus another individual who tested positive brings Bertie’s total to 18 cases of COVID-19, an increase of six since Monday. Of those 18 cases, seven are active while 10 have recovered. The virus has caused one death in Bertie.

For the most up to date information about the Coronavirus, please visit,, as well as follow all respective social media accounts including the official Facebook page for Bertie County Government.

As of 11 a.m. on Friday (April 17), NCDHHS reported 5,859 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 152 deaths across the state.

In addition to Bertie’s 18 cases, Hertford County (7) and Northampton (70) reported increases in COVID-19 activity this week. The number of cases in Gates County (4) was unchanged from last week.

Last week NCDHHS reported 3,908 cases and 74 deaths statewide.


About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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