By Outer Banks Voice on December 3, 2020
In what North Carolina Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen described as a “devastating milestone,” the state reported 5,637 new cases of COVID-19 on Dec. 3. Not only is that a record high number of daily cases, it also shatters the old record by more than 1,000 cases.
At a Dec. 3 briefing, Cohen cited other troubling metrics, such as a record number of hospitalizations and positive testing rates now in double digits. “This number is alarming,” she said referring to the new cases reported. “I’m very worried.”
As Cohen hammered away at the need to socially distance, wear masks and wash hands frequently, she did offer a few more specifics about a vaccine program that could get underway in this state within a few weeks.
While noting that “supplies will be very limited at first,” Cohen said that around 85,000 initial doses of vaccine could arrive by mid-December. They would go first to high-risk health care workers at hospitals and the staff and residents of long-term care facilities. By early 2021, she projected, the vaccines could start to be administered to high-risk adults with two or more underlying conditions.
As if to allay vaccination fears, Cohen emphasized that, “It is important to know that there is no COVID-19 virus in the vaccine itself.”
And as if to tamp down overly optimistic expectations, she also said that, “We know there will be bumps in the road administering a vaccine [program] of this scale.”
Update: One day after reporting a record-breaking 37 cases, the Dare County Department of Health and Human Services reported 20 more cases on Dec. 3. Almost half of the newest cases (9) involve non-residents of Dare County as compared with 11 residents. All of them are isolating here in Dare County or in their home counties.
Note: Every morning, the NC Department of Health and Human Services posts updates the number of reported cases of coronavirus. That number reflects positive results from all tests, including the NC State Laboratory of Public Health and all hospital and commercial labs. There may be other reports, from the media and elsewhere, that will include different numbers during a given day, but this is an effective way of tracking numbers from the same source on a day-to-day basis.
SOURCE: NC DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
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