New state data show five COVID-19 deaths last week in Rowan

Published 1:48 pm Monday, August 9, 2021

SALISBURY — Updated state data on Monday showed five people died from COVID-19 last week, with the most recent occurring on Friday.

When the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services updated its data portal Friday, it showed four deaths occurring among Rowan County residents, with one June 2 and three June 3. The additional death reported Monday brings COVID-19 fatalities since the start of the pandemic to 321, which is eighth in the state and inching closer to Buncombe County, which has the seventh-highest COVID-19 death total at 329. Counties with worse death tolls have higher populations.

With five in seven days, state data show last week was the worst for COVID-19 deaths since late February. Specific information about the deaths wasn’t available Monday.

Vaccinations across the state are making some improvements, including small increases in the percentage of Rowan Countians vaccinated. State data show 45% of residents have at least one dose of a vaccination and 42% are considered fully vaccinated. Among those 12 and older, the group for which vaccinations have been OK’d, 53% of people have at least one dose and 49% are fully vaccinated.

For the 12 and older group, the most recent numbers are a full percentage point improvement from six days ago.

Local cases and hospitalizations, however, are continuing to worsen.

In the previous two weeks, 879 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the county. The Rowan County Health Department said Monday 568 COVID-19 cases are still considered active and that about 14.8% of tests are coming back positive.

Amid the current spike, Rowan’s per capita positive rate is higher than all of its neighbors and nearly all counties in the Charlotte region.

Hospitalizations in the region, which contains 18 nearby counties, were 406 on Monday after being 397 the previous day. There were 62 people in the intensive care in COVID-19, a number that was 50 the previous day.