COVID numbers rise again

Published 5:52 pm Friday, January 14, 2022

The number of active cases of COVID-19 rose again last week with three of the four R-C area counties reporting their highest numbers to date.

Meanwhile, the local death toll from the virus also continues to climb with four deaths last week in the region.

Northampton County is reporting the largest increase of COVID-19 cases for the second straight week. As of Jan. 12, that number stood at 330 active cases, up from 240 last week.

Gates County’s cases more than doubled from the previous week…standing at 79 as of Jan. 14. The county reported 32 cases the previous week.

In Bertie County, the number of active cases increased by one over the previous week. The county reported 156 active cases as of Jan. 14. Last week’s report listed 155 cases.

Hertford County’s number of active cases decreased from 174 to 146 this week. However, due to the number of testing providers locally, the number of new cases in the region is likely much higher than official case totals indicate, according to the Roanoke-Chowan Community Health Center.

“The best way to protect yourself from the risk of contracting COVID-19 or experiencing severe illness is through vaccination. Avoid large indoor gatherings, mask appropriately, and continue to practice social distancing and good hand hygiene,” stated RCCJC in a Facebook post.

The death toll in the Roanoke-Chowan area now stands at 229 since the pandemic began in March of 2020. Bertie County lost three citizens, all over the age of 65, this week to the virus while there was one death in Northampton County.

To date, Hertford County’s death toll is 77 followed by Northampton (75), Bertie (58) and Gates (19).

“We are certainly seeing record high numbers at this time,” said R. Battle Betts, Jr., Health Director of Albemarle Regional Health Services. “Our hope is that this wave will be relatively short lived, with a decrease in cases occurring as quickly as the increase has, however, we just don’t quite know when that will occur.

“What we do know is that vaccines are preventing severe illness,” Betts continued. “About 87% of all NC ICU admissions are in those who are unvaccinated. We must do all we can to protect ourselves and our loved ones from this illness. We are also starting to see cases of the flu in the region. It is so important to practice prevention measures like wear a mask, stay home when you are sick, test when needed/ advised, wash your hands, and get a vaccine. It’s not too late to get your COVID shot or your flu shot.”

For more information about COVID testing or vaccinations, contact the Gates County Health Dept. (252-357-1380), the Bertie County Health Dept. (252-794-5322), the Hertford County Health Dept. (252-862-4054) or the Northampton County Health Department (252-534-5841).

Vidant Health has 14 locations across eastern North Carolina to help you get tested for COVID-19. If you need a test, please visit VidantHealth.com/safecommunities to find a Vidant testing location near you. Due to significant demand for COVID testing, please expect delays.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reported on Jan. 12 of 25,445 newly diagnosed COVID-19 cases. To show the surge in cases, there were 3,009 new cases reported one month earlier (Dec. 12).

The daily percent positive stood at 30.9% on Jan. 12 compared to 8.9% on Dec. 12

The number of patients hospitalized statewide with COVID-19 issues on Jan. 12 was 4,098 compared to 1,546 on Dec. 12.

 

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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