The following COVID-19 information is compiled from local and state agencies from May 4 to May 10. This weekly update will present the latest COVID-19 information as of publication.
Watauga County experienced an increase of 65 total COVID-19 cases since May 4 to reach 4,689 total cases as of May 10. The active case count has risen slightly during the course of the week with 25 total active cases as of May 10.
AppHealthCare reported no new deaths in the week of May 4 to May 10. The last reported death was on Feb. 16.
As of May 10, AppHealthCare reported 146 people have been hospitalized since the pandemic started in its three-county district that also includes Ashe and Alleghany counties.
AppHealthCare reported three active clusters in Watauga County in its last situation update May 7. In its COVID-19 situation report, AppHealthCare reported clusters at:
- App State women’s soccer team with six total cases. The last positive result came on April 21, and as of the last report zero cases are active.
- Cottages of Boone with 21 total cases. The last positive result came on April 26, and as of the last report zero cases are active.
- Watauga County Detention Center with 36 cumulative cases. The last positive result came on May 3, and as of the last report 19 cases are active.
As of May 10, Appalachian State University has had 562 students and 48 employees test positive for COVID-19 since Jan. 1, 2021. Four students were active as of May 10.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reports Watauga County has administered 24,376 first dose COVID-19 vaccines as of May 10 — up by a little more than 200 from May 4. NCDHHS also reports 22,123 people have completed the vaccine series in Watauga County — up nearly 1,000 from May 4.
As of May 10, roughly 43.4 percent of the population in Watauga County has been at least partially vaccinated and about 39.4 percent of the population has been fully vaccinated, according to NCDHHS.
State COVID-19 update
NCDHHS announced May 6 that more than 50 percent percent of adults 18 and older in the state have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine. More than 43 percent of the adult population is fully vaccinated against the virus.
“This is a significant milestone toward our goal of stopping the spread of COVID-19 and bringing summer back to North Carolina,” said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen. “I hope you will join the more than 4 million people who have taken their shot and help put this pandemic behind us.”
To date, the state has administered more than 7.4 million vaccines. More than 74 percent of the population over 65 years of age is fully vaccinated, and nearly 40 percent of the total population of the state, regardless of age, has received at least one dose.
The department is working to ensure receiving a COVID-19 vaccine is easy and convenient for anyone 16 and older. The vaccine is widely available through a variety of providers, often with no wait time and without the need for an appointment. To find a vaccine in your area, use the Find a Vaccine Location tool at myspot.nc.gov/?mc_cid=051d185678&mc_eid=89a423aea7 or call (888) 675-4567.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week shared an updated list of what fully vaccinated people can do. Activities include gathering indoors with other fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask or staying six feet apart, as well as moving freely outdoors without wearing a mask except in certain crowded settings and venues. Fully vaccinated people who have been around someone who has COVID-19 do not need to stay away from others or get tested, unless symptoms develop. The full updated list can be found at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated.html?mc_cid=051d185678&mc_eid=89a423aea7.
If North Carolina continues to work together, improve key metrics and increase vaccination rates, the state is poised to lift mandatory social distancing, capacity and mass gathering restrictions on June 1, according to NCDHHS. Additionally, the state has set a goal to get two-thirds of adults vaccinated with at least one shot in order to lift the indoor mask mandate and lighten other public health recommendations. The timeline for this benchmark will be determined by how quickly North Carolinians get vaccinated, according to NCDHHS.