NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – Following the July 4 holiday weekend, New Hanover County’s COVID-19 metrics have reached Medium CDC Community Level benchmarks as viral spread has significantly increased in the area. To help mitigate and limit the virus’ impact on the community, residents are asked to take precautions when appropriate, such as wearing a face covering, washing hands and staying home when sick.
“Moving into the medium community level is not ideal, but by working together and doing little things we can get back to the low level and keep our community safe,” said Pandemic Operations Manager Jon Campbell. “We have at-home rapid COVID-19 tests available at the Pandemic Operations Center free of charge and encourage individuals who may have symptoms to seek testing so they can take proper measures to limit the spread of the virus if those results come back positive. And while it might seem like a minor thing, washing your hands frequently and wearing a mask, especially when indoors and around other people, can make a big impact.”
CDC Community Levels are based on three factors – case rate per 100,000, new hospital admissions per 100,000, and percent of hospital beds used for people with confirmed COVID-19. Any case rate above 200 per 100,000 moves a county to the medium level. As of Friday morning, New Hanover County has a case rate of 232 per 100,00 for the week.
Previously, New Hanover County was at medium when the CDC Community Level system was launched in March, moving to the low classification a week later. The county has remained at the low level since March 10.
When the community level increases to medium, the CDC recommends talking to your healthcare provider to discuss what additional protective measures should be taken If you are immunocompromised or at high risk for severe illness with COVID-19. Recommendations also include limiting time at indoor public locations, maintaining social distancing, wearing a properly fitted face covering and staying up to date on vaccines and boosters.
The Pandemic Operations Center (1507 Greenfield Street) is offering initial vaccines and boosters. Appointments are recommended but not required and can be made by visiting TakeMyShot.NC.gov. Vaccines and boosters will be available during the following days and times:
- Mondays from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
- Tuesdays from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
- Thursdays from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
- Fridays from 1-5 p.m.
The Pandemic Operations Center is also offering no-cost rapid testing. An appointment is recommended and can be made by visiting this link, but again it is not required. Rapid tests will be available during the following days and times:
- Wednesdays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Fridays from 9 a.m.-noon
For more information on the Pandemic Operations Center, vaccines, boosters or testing, visit Health.NHCgov.com/Coronavirus or call the Pandemic Operations Call Center at 910-798-6800.