COVID-19 in New Hanover County continues to level-off, community testing shifts to direct outreach

Posted August 28, 2020 at 3:28 pm     Category: Emergency NewsNews ReleasePublic Health

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – Cases of COVID-19 in New Hanover County continue to level off, averaging about 22 cases per day the past week, down from 53 per day the last week of July.

Additionally, demand for New Hanover County community drive-through testing has decreased, and Public Health will shift from conducting drive-through testing on-site weekly, to working with community partners to bring free testing to areas that face barriers to testing access.

“Earlier this summer we saw more widespread transmission of COVID-19 and a busy testing site, but as safety measures and the three Ws have been followed, we’re seeing a decrease in the prevalence of COVID-19 and the need for our drive-through testing site,” said New Hanover County Assistant Health Director Carla Turner, RN, MSHCA. “COVID-19 is still present in our community and these safety measures need to continue, but we have an opportunity now to shift to a more direct outreach and targeted testing strategy, focusing on populations at higher risk of illness from COVID-19 and traditionally underserved communities. Our Call Center remains available to residents seeking testing resources and information about COVID-19, and that number is 910-798-6800.”

New Hanover County Public Health will work with organizations in the community to partner for pop-up or recurring testing in locations across the county to increase access to free testing resources for residents facing barriers like lack of health insurance, transportation, identification, and other challenges. When testing sites are set up, outreach will be done in the surrounding community.

COVID-19 testing is available throughout New Hanover County through local healthcare providers, and organizations including pharmacies and free clinics. Additionally, the NC Department of Health and Human Services recently implemented the Medicaid for Coronavirus program for COVID-19 testing and diagnosis. Individuals without health insurance may be eligible for this program and can view criteria and the application here, or by calling New Hanover County Health and Human Services at 910-798-3500.

You should be tested for COVID-19 if you:

  • are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19;
  • have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19; or
  • meet other criteria like working in a high-risk setting, have participated in gatherings or are a member of a historically marginalized community.

Call the New Hanover County Coronavirus Call Center at 910-798-6800, or visit covid.NCDHHS.gov to enter your address and find the closest testing site near you.

For more information about COVID-19 in New Hanover County, including the county’s recently-launched data dashboard, visit Health.NHCgov.com/Coronavirus.

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As of 3:30 p.m. on Friday, August 28, there have been a total of 3,118 positive cases of COVID-19 in New Hanover County. For updates and resources and the New Hanover County COVID-19 dashboard, visit Health.NHCgov.com/Coronavirus, call our Public Health Coronavirus Call Center at 910-798-6800, and follow the county’s trusted social media pages: TwitterFacebookInstagram, and Nextdoor.    

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Communications and Outreach: 230 Government Center Drive, Suite 195 • Wilmington, NC 28403 • Phone 910-798-7461 • Fax 910-798-7277