COVID-19 cases in Rowan County remain above summer low, continue to produce deaths

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 31, 2021

SALISBURY — While daily COVID-19 positives have declined precipitously since a peak in late August and September, cases continue to produce deaths on a regular basis and haven’t dipped to a summer low.

Rowan County has seen an average of 25 daily COVID-19 positives in the previous two weeks, according to data from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. That’s higher than a low point in June, when there were an average of seven cases reported per day in a two-week period, but much lower than late August and early September, when there were regularly more than 200 cases reported in a day.

The percentage of positive tests in the previous two weeks shows a similar trend as the number of positives — 5.9% of tests coming back positive now compared to 3.7% in June.

NCDHHS says 455 Rowan County residents have died since the start of the pandemic, which includes 30 people in October, according to data available Friday. While Rowan went multiple days without reported COVID-19 deaths in the summer, the 30 deaths mean the county is averaging a little more than one per day this month.

Oct. 11 saw the most COVID-19 deaths during the month — five.

Rowan remains in the top 10 among North Carolina’s 100 counties for most deaths. It has at least 100 more COVID-19 deaths than every surrounding county.

In other COVID-19 statistics:

• 44% of Rowan County residents have at least one dose of a vaccine and 41% are considered fully vaccinated.

The most vaccinated age group in the county are those 75 and older (73% with at least one dose.). Second is the 65-74 age group (70%). Third is the 50-64 age group (55%).

• There are 10 congregate living outbreaks considered active in Rowan County. The largest of them is the nursing home Accordius Health at Salisbury, with four staff cases, 41 resident cases and four resident deaths.

• The state considers two schools in Rowan County to have active COVID-19 clusters — Corriher Lipe Middle and Southeast Middle. A cluster requires five or more cases and can take a month or more before no longer being considered active.

• There were 310 people hospitalized in Rowan County’s hospital region on Friday — the Triad Health Care Preparedness Coalition. That includes 79 intensive care patients.