Iredell County Reports Deadly Rise In COVID-19 Cases

Kimberly Johnson

MOORESVILLE, NC — The number of known COVID-19 cases in Iredell County rose to 9,992 confirmed cases Monday, an increase of 942 known cases in the span of one week, according to Iredell County Health Department data.

At least 110 deaths were attributed to the virus Monday, representing an increase of six county residents dead from the virus in a week. During the month of December, at least 39 county residents died from coronavirus, ICHD said.

SEE ALSO: COVID-19 Hospitalizations Peak At More Than 3,600 In NC

As of Jan. 4, at least 69 county residents were hospitalized — nine more than reported Dec. 28

The news comes as North Carolina's tally of COVID-19 cases rose by 5,187 new cases Monday, increasing the state's total to 570,111 known cases, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

At least 31 deaths were reported throughout the state, increasing the state's death toll to 6,941. As of Jan. 4, about 16.5 percent of tests conducted in the state were positive.

"Our hospitalization numbers are alarming," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said Monday, via Twitter. "We must protect hospital capacity so anyone who gets sick for any reason can get the care they need. It’s up to all of us to prevent our health care system from being overwhelmed."

At least 31 deaths were reported Monday, increasing the state's death toll to 6,941.

Most healthcare providers will move into "Phase 1B" — the phase allotted for adults 75 years or older and frontline essential workers who are 50 years old or older, such as firefighters, police officers, grocery store workers and teachers — by the week of Jan. 11, DHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen said last week.

Phase "1B" could include up to 2 million North Carolinians, Cohen said, stressing that the process will require patience. Given the size of shipments to the state, North Carolina likely will not reach Phase 4, when vaccinations should be available for anyone who wants one, until the Spring of 2021, she said.

Here is NCDHHS' updated timeline for vaccination rollout:

Phase 1A: Health care workers fighting COVID-19 & Long-Term Care staff and residents.

  • Health care workers caring for and working directly with patients with COVID-19, including staff responsible for cleaning and maintenance in those areas

  • Health care workers administering vaccine

  • Long-term care staff and residents—people in skilled nursing facilities and in adult, family and group homes.

Phase 1b: Adults 75 years or older and frontline essential workers.
There is not enough vaccine for everyone in this phase to be vaccinated at the same time. Vaccinations will be available to groups in the following order.

  • Group 1: Anyone 75 years or older, regardless of health status or living situation

  • Group 2: Health care workers and frontline essential workers 50 years or older The CDC defines frontline essential workers as first responders (e.g., firefighters and police officers), corrections officers, food and agricultural workers, U.S. Postal Service workers, manufacturing workers, grocery store workers, public transit workers, and those who work in the education sector (teachers and support staff members) as well as child care workers.

  • Group 3: Health care workers and frontline essential workers of any age

Phase 2: Adults at high risk for exposure and at increased risk of severe illness.
Vaccinations will happen by group in the following order:

  • Group 1: Anyone 65-74 years old, regardless of health status or living situation

  • Group 2: Anyone 16-64 years old with high-risk medical conditions that increase risk of severe disease from COVID such as cancer, COPD, serious heart conditions, sickle cell disease, Type 2 diabetes, among others, regardless of living situation

  • Group 3: Anyone who is incarcerated or living in other close group living settings who is not already vaccinated due to age, medical condition or job function.

  • Group 4: Essential workers not yet vaccinated. The CDC defines these as workers in transportation and logistics, water and wastewater, food service, shelter and housing (e.g., construction), finance (e.g., bank tellers), information technology and communications, energy, legal, media, and public safety (e.g., engineers), and public health workers.

Phase 3: Students

  • College and university students

  • K-12 students age 16 and over. Younger children will only be vaccinated when the vaccine is approved for them.

Phase 4: Everyone who wants a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccination.

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This article originally appeared on the Mooresville Patch