Craven County isn’t quite through the post-Thanksgiving COVID-19 spike, if the number of new cases between Monday and Tuesday is any indicator.

After a lull of a couple of days, Craven County’s daily COVID-19 count increased by 79 cases from Monday to Tuesday, second only to Dec. 10, when there were 86 new cases.

Meanwhile, Craven County Schools reported 3 staff members and 14 students who have tested positive for COVID-19. This information was reported to the school system during the dates of Dec. 10-14, 2020. This is not considered a cluster since the cases are not at the same school campus.

Here’s the cumulative tally:

On the bright side, Craven County recorded 215 more recovered cases, no new deaths, and hospitalizations were down by three since Monday.

Hospitalizations reported by the Craven County Health Department only include Craven County residents. It does not reflect how many COVID-19 patients are at CarolinaEast Medical Center. That takes a separate call or email.

We contacted CarolinaEast for its daily COVID-19 census and received numbers for Dec. 1 through Dec. 10, 2020.

The numbers show total cases and the number of patients in ICU on ventilators (3-4 cases per day during this period.

CarolinaEast doesn’t break out Craven County residents in its numbers, and Craven County Health Department doesn’t report how many total patients are at the hospital. So we have to make some assumptions in order to visualize the statistics in this graphic. See the notes for details.

Nearing 4,000

Craven County will surpass 4,000 lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in the next day or two. The county 3,917 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of 11 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020.

The number only reflects lab-confirmed cases. It does not reflect cases where people were unaware that they were infected, were unable to be tested, or were unwilling to be tested. Together, the number of COVID-19 cases that are untested is probably much higher than lab-confirmed cases, by some estimates 10 times higher.

At a minimum, around 4 percent of Craven County’s population has or has had the virus. More likely, it is at least 10 percent if not 20 percent — 1 in 5.

Out of the 3,917 confirmed positive cases, 3,246 have recovered.

Someone is presumed recovered based on guidelines set by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

Viral spread in Craven County

Out-of-state travelCommunity transmissionDirect contactUnder investigationUnknown
381,0142,626648714
UnchangedUp 101Up 115Down 115Unchanged
Changes Dec. 30-31, 2020

The number of community transmission cases climbed again, but so did direct contact cases, which is expected from a second-wave spike.

Craven County snapshot

Confirmed Active Recovered DeathsHospitalized
3,9175933,2467818
Source: Craven County Health Department

The death rate for Craven County is 1.2 percent of lab-confirmed cases. Assuming that the actual case number is much higher, the death rate would be correspondingly lower.

Still, at 78 deaths, Craven County has more deaths than all its neighbors, including two counties that are significantly larger in population, Onslow and Pitt counties.

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