Novant Health testing site reopens as Rowan County COVID-19 cases hit new pandemic high

Published 1:40 pm Monday, January 10, 2022

SALISBURY — With new COVID-19 cases rising and tests in high demand, Novant Health says it will reopen its drive-thru testing site on Mocksville Avenue.

The testing site at 315 Mocksville Ave. will be open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. starting this week. The drive-thru site is located behind the Community Care Clinic.

Workers at the site will provide PCR tests, which take a day or two to produce results.

The Rowan County Health Department provides a list of mass testing site hours at Pharmacies such as the Medicine Shoppe, Moose Pharmacy, Walgreens and CVS also offer COVID-19 tests and ask that patients schedule an appointment.

The Novant testing site’s reopening come as daily cases in Rowan County have reached a new high — 370 positives from specimen collected on Jan. 4. While the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reports data daily, new cases are not necessarily from specimen collected on the same day. There are differences in the speed results return and a lag in results appearing in the state’s system. NCDHHS cautions that numbers dating back to the start of the year could be incomplete and see more cases added.

In addition to Jan. 4, two other days have seen COVID-19 case totals above 350 — Jan. 3 and Jan. 5. The previous high for most COVID-19 cases was Aug. 23, when specimen were collected for 314 new positives.

NCDHHS data show 2,929 COVID-19 positives reported in the previous two weeks in Rowan County. Adjusted for population, Rowan County’s total is worse than Davie, Davidson and Stanly counties and better than Cabarrus and Iredell counties. The state’s numbers do not include people who have conducted home tests they purchased at a store.

The spike in positives also has been followed by an increase in hospitalizations, according to NCDHHS data. The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Rowan County’s region — the Triad Health Care Preparendess Coalition — is 938. That’s more than double the total from one month ago. Data released last week by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services show about 156 of 269 total beds occupied at Rowan Medical Center. About 33 patients were confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19.

Three Rowan County residents have died in 2022 after contracting COVID-19. There have been 503 COVID-19 fatalities in the county since the start of the pandemic.

The total number of people fully vaccinated in the county — 60,265 — has improved since the start of the year, but the percentage remains unchanged at 42%. The percentage is lower than all of Rowan County’s neighbors as well as the state average — 57%.

The percentage of tests coming back positive, meanwhile, is about 30% in Rowan County and 31% statewide.