County reports more than 60 new COVID-19 cases Monday

Published 7:05 pm Monday, August 24, 2020

By Natalie Anderson

SALISBURY — More than 60 people were reported positive for COVID-19 on Monday as cases surged at local congregate care facilities.

County data currently show a total of 345 cases at local nursing homes, with four facilities currently experiencing an outbreak of the virus. Over the weekend, Trinity Oaks became the site of the largest outbreak as its ownership group reported 39 residents and 28 staff members have tested positive.

Bill Johnson, Trinity Oaks campus executive director, said on Sunday the virus is confined to one of three separate neighborhoods in the health and rehab building. Additionally, one staff member from Trinity at Home, a facility that provides home care, has tested positive.

The next largest outbreak across congregate care sites in the county is at Autumn Care, where the latest county update shows 11 positive employees and 33 positive residents there. Autumn Care is also the site of three deaths reported over the last two weeks.

Other outbreaks include Accordius Health, with five positive residents and one positive staff member, as well as one positive resident and staff member at Compass Health in Spencer. Until early July, the Citadel in Salisbury had been the site of the largest COVID-19 outbreak in Rowan County, and the largest nursing home outbreak in the state. There had been 168 confirmed cases across staff and residents when it was declared over by the state.

There is currently a cluster of five positive employees at North Hills Christian School. And over the weekend, Jesse C. Carson High School in China Grove told parents one student had tested positive for COVID-19. In a letter sent to families, the school said the entire facility was disinfected and sanitized since last week, when the student was last in the school building.

“Our top priority is for the health and safety of each staff member and each student that we are honored to serve,” said Principal Benjamin Crawford in the letter. “We will continue to conduct daily screenings and temperature checks prior to staff and students entering our building. Help us as we teach our children about the importance of wearing face coverings, social distancing and frequent hand washing.”

On Monday, the county reported an additional 62 people were reported positive for COVID-19 after an increase of 12 just one day earlier. There are now a total of 2,577 positive. Of those, 409 are active cases.

Deaths remained at 52 on Monday, as did the number of hospitalizations, 23.

Hospitalizations across the state improved on Monday, with the latest state data showing 948 hospitalizations with 156,396 confirmed cases. A total of 2.09 million tests have been conducted, and 2,535 people have died.

Across the state, 136,630 cases have been presumed recovered, which means about 87% of all positive cases have recovered.

Monday’s county update came with little change to the demographic data regarding the outbreak in Rowan County. Hispanic residents currently comprise almost 34% of all cases. White residents make up more than half of all cases. Black residents make up nearly 14% of all cases. Fewer than than 1% of all cases have been among Asian residents, American Indian/Alaskan Native residents and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander residents. A little more than 28% of all cases are considered unknown or other.

The average age of positive cases has risen to 43.1. Young adults still make up the plurality of all cases, as 778 people aged 18-35 have tested positive. Locals between the ages of 36-50 comprise 613 cases, along with 469 cases among the 51-64 age bracket and 451 cases among those 65 and older. Cases among those under 18 are currently at 266.

Nearly 53% of all cases have been among women.

Zip code 28147 has been the area hit hardest by the virus, as 723 cases have been reported there. A total of 570 cases have been within the 28144 area, which is also where Trinity Oaks is located.

Contact reporter Natalie Anderson at 704-797-4246.

About Natalie Anderson

Natalie Anderson covers the city of Salisbury, politics and more for the Salisbury Post. She joined the staff in January 2020 after graduating from Louisiana State University, where she was editor of The Reveille newspaper. Email her at or call her at 704-797-4246.

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