The Craven County Health Department has been swamped by a surge in new COVID-19 cases amid the rollout of vaccine.
“Right now the entire state is an area of concern,” Health Department spokesperson Amber Tabarrini said. “We went from 36th in the nation to 7 in the nation for COVID-19 transmission a few days ago. We are trying to test and give vaccinations and stand up a call center. It is all hands on deck and we are doing all that we can do.”
The Health Department stopped issuing daily reports to the public due to the increased workload, Tabarrini indicated.
“Most of the reporting we were doing was a duplication of what is already on the NCDHHS dashboard website,” she said.
“The two things that are not on the state website is our active case count and the local hospitalization numbers. Our active case count was inflated because our staff did not have the time to cull the list daily.
“A better measure of the community transmission is the Harvard website with 7 day transmission averages for every county in the country,” she said.
The information can be found on the Harvard site (https://globalepidemics.org/key-metrics-for-covid-suppression/ ).
This link along with a link to the NCDHHS website will be shared on Fridays with our hospitalization information, she said.
Craven County added 129 lab-confirmed positive COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours and one death, bringing to county’s total death toll to 88. The total number of lab-confirmed cases in the county is 5,532.
New Bern Post will update this article later, but frankly, I’m glued to the TV watching what’s going on at the U.S. Capitol.
Statewide, 84 of the state’s 100 counties are red, or critical status, for COVID-19 spread, including Craven County.
Compare that to 65 red counties in the last update on Dec. 22.
The state is urging schools to delay in-school classes because of the situation.