By Nathan Ham
Over the last five days, AppHealthCare has reported 639 new COVID-19 cases in Watauga County as well as three new clusters, bringing the total to four active clusters or outbreaks within the county.
According to the latest data provided by AppHealthCare, there have been 1,032 new cases within the last five days in the three-county region of Watauga, Ashe and Alleghany counties. In addition to the 639 cases in Watauga, there were 301 new cases in Ashe County and 92 new cases in Alleghany County.
In last week’s update from AppHealthCare, there were COVID-19 clusters or outbreaks reported at the Hospitality House, the Foley Center and Glenbridge Health and Rehabilitation. This week there were two additional clusters reported, one within the women’s basketball program at Appalachian State and the other within the wrestling program at Appalachian State. There were 11 cases reported among App State wrestlers and six cases reported among women’s basketball players. Currently, there are two active cases at Glenbridge, bringing the total there to six cases. There are no active cases at the Hospitality House, leaving their current total at 13 cases.
As of Friday, January 21, North Carolina reported 35,395 new cases with 34.3% of tests conducted returning a positive result for COVID-19. There were 4,867 individuals currently hospitalized with complications from the virus and 20,193 total deaths had been reported.
On Friday, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and North Carolina Emergency Management requested federal support for the Charlotte region to help alleviate capacity constraints at hospitals due to the overwhelming surge in positive cases brought on by the omicron variant.
“We continue to monitor hospital capacity and staffing needs and have requested resources, including additional nurses from FEMA,” said Governor Roy Cooper. “We appreciate previous federal support and will keep working to make sure that people get the medical care they need.”
Earlier this month FEMA provided the state with 25 ambulances. They have been deployed to 11 counties and are currently scheduled to remain in North Carolina until Feb. 3.
“The vast majority of people hospitalized with COVID-19 are unvaccinated,” Secretary Kinsley said. “While we will continue to pull every lever we can to safeguard hospital care, each North Carolinian can do their part by staying up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations and wearing a well-fitting mask when around other people as we weather this surge.”