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COVID claims life of first young person locally

While the number of local deaths associated with the COVID-19 virus was down dramatically this week in the local area, it did claim the life of a young person.

Albemarle Regional Health Services (ARHS) received notification confirming one additional death associated with COVID-19 in a Bertie County resident. This individual was in the 18-24 year age range and succumbed to complication from the virus. This death is not related to a facility outbreak.

There were no other local deaths from the virus this week. Eleven R-C area residents died last week.

Since pandemic began in March of last year, there have been 65 deaths from the virus in Northampton County; 57 in Hertford County; 39 in Bertie County; and 12 in Gates County.

As of Friday, Feb. 5, there were 63 active COVID cases in Hertford County (down from 85 last week); 40 in Northampton (76 last week); 36 in Bertie (57 last week); and 42 in Gates (36 last week).

The number of local individuals who have recovered from the virus also continues to rise: 1,708 in Hertford County; 1,479 in Bertie; 1,465 in Northampton; and 514 in Gates.

Meanwhile, ARHS announced on Feb. 5 that the number of individuals across their eight-county service area receiving the doses of the COVID-19 vaccine increased this week as follows:

Bertie County: 4,020 first doses; 550 second doses;

Gates County: 2,082 first doses; 500 second doses; and

Hertford County: 3,277 first doses; 809 second doses.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reported that Northampton County has administered 1,647 first doses of the vaccine and 284 second doses as of Feb. 5.

With reduced allocations of vaccine for the week of February 8-11, ARHS will be utilizing 1,300 first doses to target vaccine clinics for historically marginalized populations and underserved communities within the priority groups throughout the region.

For the week of Feb. 8-11, ARHS has scheduled second dose Moderna vaccine clinics in Currituck, Pasquotank, and Perquimans counties.

COVID-19 testing is still available for those meeting criteria by appointment only at the local health departments across the region. ARHS encourages residents to call their primary care provider for an assessment or information on testing availability before calling the local health department. If someone does not have a primary care home, ARHS does offer primary care services.

All tests will be completed through a curbside screening clinic at the local health department. For more information on criteria for COVID-19 testing or appointments, call 252-338-WELL/9355 or your local health department directly.

ARHS is collaborating with OptumServe to provide additional, no-cost COVID-19 testing sites in Bertie, Hertford, Gates, and Chowan counties. Typically testing is available Monday, Thursday, and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Tuesday and Friday from 1 – 5 p.m. You may check availability and register to make an appointment for testing by visiting https://lhi.care/covidtesting or by calling (877) – 562-4850.

Northampton County residents wishing to get tested can call the health department there at 252-534-5841.

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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