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New record set in Rowan for daily COVID-19 positives

SALISBURY — The new year began with a new record for coronavirus cases in Rowan County.

There were 278 new COVID-19 positives reported Friday. It was more than double the previous day’s increase and the largest number of cases reported since Christmas Eve, when there were 267 cases reported. Until Christmas Eve, there had only been a single increase greater than 140.

Deaths increased by one — a person who did not live in a nursing home or residential care facility. Recoveries, meanwhile, only increased by 23 on Friday, which spiked the number of active cases to 3,311. Just a month ago, the same number was less than a third of its current total.

The sharp increase, however, is partially attributable to the fact that a greater percentage of COVID-19 tests are coming back positive, which has slowed the process of case investigations, including whether people have recovered, by Rowan County Health Department staff.

The county’s average number of tests returning positive has topped 15% in the previous two weeks, reaching numbers more than three times the level that health officials have aimed for — 5%.

There have now been 173 deaths attributed to COVID-19 in the county, 338 total Rowan Countians hospitalized, 8,825 positives and 5,619 recoveries. On Friday, there were 29 Rowan Countians being hospitalized.

There have been more than 94,000 tests conducted in the county.

Friday’s update showed 11 facilities with coronavirus outbreaks considered active. Those facilities include: Accordius Health, Autumn Care, Big Elm Rehab & Living Center, Brightmoor Nursing, N.C. Veterans Home, The Citadel, The Laurels, Trinity Oaks Skilled Nursing, Trinity Oaks Assisted Living, Bethany Retirement Center and Meadows of Rockwell.

There was no statewide update posted Friday because of the New Year’s Day holiday.

Other local COVID-19 statistics are as follows:

• The 18-35 age group represent the plurality of cases at 2,499. Next is the 36-50 age group, with 2,084.
• Data municipalities and unincorporated areas largely follow population totals. There have been 4,589 positives in unincorporated areas, 2,714 in Salisbury and 620 cases in the portion of Kannapolis in Rowan County. Of towns in Rowan County, China Grove has seen the most positives at 267.
• White Rowan Countians are 58.41% of positives. Black residents are 12.17%. Hispanic residents are 17.86% of positives.
• The average age of the dead is 79. The average age of the hospitalized is 65. The average age of people testing positive is 44.2.

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