Buncombe COVID-19 case rates show promise, but deaths increase

Press release from Buncombe County:

Buncombe County continues to see the case rate and percent positivity decline when compared to prior week. Cases per 100,000 per week decreased from 119 last week to 107 this week. At 4.7%, the percent positivity dropped below 5% for the first time since July.

The death rate increased since week prior with seven new deaths reported in Buncombe County residents this week.

“The takeaway message right now is that we continue to see improvement, but the decline in the surge is happening slower than the rise or increase occurred,” said Public Health Director Stacie Saunders. “This means we remain in a space of high transmission. Please don’t let your guard down. COVID-19 is still abundantly circulating in our community.”

While cases across the board are decreasing, the greatest proportion remains in people ages 25-49.

Buncombe County Health and Human Services (BCHHS) recently concluded a 30-day vaccination push during which nearly 650 first doses were administered. About 71% of the eligible population in Buncombe County (people ages 12 and older) have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Last week the FDA provided emergency use authorization for vaccines for children ages 5-11. CDC recommendation is required before vaccinations can occur and approval is anticipated shortly. Upon direction from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, BCHHS will support pediatric administration and will modify operations at 40 Coxe to prepare the clinic for adolescents. All vaccine administration at 40 Coxe will take place Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Saturday outreach events will take place from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. on:

· Nov. 13 – Asheville Middle

· Nov. 20 – North Buncombe High

· Dec. 4 – Erwin High, TC Roberson High

· Dec. 11 – Owen High, A.C. Reynolds High

The NCDHHS will support a family vaccination site at the Edington Center, and FEMA will provide vaccine resource extension.

On November 9, BCHHS will host a Parent Town Hall to answer questions about COVID-19 vaccines for young people. Go to www.buncombeready.org to learn more.

Currently, locally funded $100 incentive cards are available while supplies last for eligible individuals (18 years and up) receiving their first dose of vaccine at the Buncombe County Vaccination Clinic or at any BCHHS pop-up clinic. Individuals can visit the Buncombe County Health Department at 40 Coxe Ave., Asheville Tuesday through Friday, from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. to receive a vaccination. Individuals can also visit www.yourspotyourshot.nc.gov to find a vaccination site near you.

Last week, the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners extended the face covering requirement for indoor public spaces through Nov. 30.

If you are having symptoms consistent with COVID-19, get tested. Testing locations can be found at Find My Testing Site NC. StarMed offers testing at Harrah’s Event Center Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. and on Sundays at A-B Tech from noon until 4 p.m.

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Mountain Xpress posts selected news and information of local interest as a public service for our readers. To submit press releases and other community material for possible publication, email news@mountainx.com.

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One thought on “Buncombe COVID-19 case rates show promise, but deaths increase

  1. Lou

    So messed up…pay idiots to get a shot they should have gotten at the first opportunity. You think they need that money? They’ll likely just use it towards ammo for the civil war they’re planning. Stupid is forever. Let them keep refusing the shot, Darwin do your thing.

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