How does Rowan compare to neighboring counties during COVID-19 outbreak?

Published 2:45 am Monday, July 27, 2020

SALISURY — In some key COVID-19 statistics, Rowan County finds itself with higher numbers than most of its immediate neighbors.

The Rowan County Health Department on Sunday said there were 1,868 total cases, including 296 active ones and 14 people who were hospitalized. The death toll remained at 48 on Sunday. Rowan County also has five active outbreaks at congregate living facilities, including nursing homes, jails or group homes.

Only Cabarrus County has more total and active cases than Rowan County. There, the Cabarrus Health Alliance reports 2,218 cases, 682 of which are active. There have been 39 deaths among people who have tested positive for COVID-19. The Cabarrus Health Alliance says 20 people are currently hospitalized. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services says there are three active outbreaks.

At 489, Iredell County, has many more active COVID-19 cases than Rowan despite having fewer total cases. Its active cases include 20 people who are hospitalized, also higher than Rowan. Iredell has 1,504 total positives, 18 deaths and two active outbreaks.

At nine, Stanly County has the largest number of outbreaks among neighboring counties. And its outbreaks include the Albemarle Correctional Institution, one of the worst state prison outbreaks in the state. At the prison, 104 people have tested positive for COVID-19 and three people have died, including two last week.

Stanly County has 794 total cases, 163 active cases, six deaths and 10 people currently hospitalized, according to the latest update from its health department.

While larger in population than Rowan County, Davidson County is faring better in several key indicators. There, 1,527 people have tested positive, 133 cases are currently active, 16 are dead, six are hospitalized and four facilities have outbreaks, according to its health department and state data.

Davie County is smallest in population of any neighboring community and, similarly, has lower statistics in almost every category. There, 309 people have tested positive, 35 are currently active, four have died and two are hospitalized. There are no active outbreaks, according to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.

The number of tests conducted is not provided on the health department websites of most of Rowan County’s neighbors. And local leaders admit the number provided with daily updates omits some negative test results the local health department does not receive.

The local update published Sunday said 10,475 tests have been conducted in Rowan County, which would be a 17.83% positive rate. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, however, now has a section of its online data hub showing the case positive rate for counties. There, Rowan’s ratio is just 7%, which is lower than the state average of 9%.

The case positive ratio for neighboring counties is as follows:

• Stanly: 11%

• Cabarrus: 9%

• Iredell: 8%

• Davidson: 5%

• Davie: 5%

Local testing locations are as follows this week

West End Plaza
1935 W. Jake Alexander Blvd., Salisbury
Monday from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Testing is free and open to the public

Northern Rowan Family Medicine
313 N Salisbury Ave., Spencer
Tuesday 8:30–11:30 a.m.

Rowan County Health Department
1811 E Innes St., Salisbury
Wednesday 8:30–11 a.m.
Thursday 4–7 p.m.
Testing is free and open to the public

Rowan Helping Ministries
226 N Long St., Salisbury
Wednesday 8:30–11:30 a.m.

Novant Health Rowan
1904 Jake Alexander Blvd., Salisbury
Call 704-210-7845 for an appointment
Testing criteria may apply

Novant Health Rowan Screening Center
315 Mocksville Ave., Salisbury
Tuesday 8 a.m. – noon
Thursday 8 a.m. – noon
Testing criteria may apply
Patients are tested without leaving their car