NC sees record number of hospitalizations; SC’s percent positive over 13%

NC sees record number of hospitalizations; SC’s percent positive over 13%

A day after Gov. Roy Cooper issued a new executive order tightening the mask mandate ahead of Thanksgiving, North Carolina reported more than 1,700 people are currently in the hospital with COVID-19.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reported Tuesday that a total of 1,724 patients are currently hospitalized due to the virus – the highest the state has seen since the pandemic began in March.

[NC COVID-19 Dashboard: Click here for updated numbers of coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations as reported by NCDHHS]

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On Monday, North Carolina reported more than 1,600 patients for the first time. The number has steadily increased nearly every day for the past two weeks.

The state also reported 3,100 new cases of COVID-19 and 35 more deaths.

North Carolina’s latest percent positive rate was at 6.5%.

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control on Tuesday announced 1,374 new confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state as well as 23 more deaths.

The state’s percent positive rate has climbed to 13.2%.

>> Have questions about the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the Carolinas? We have an entire section dedicated to coverage of the outbreak -- CLICK HERE FOR MORE.

Note: The numbers we show you every day mean everything in how our community recovers from coronavirus -- both in terms of healthcare and the economy -- but they don’t mean much without the proper context and as much transparency as possible.

New cases vary day by day based on a lot of factors. That can include how long it takes to get results back, so a new case reported today can really be several days old.

The other big metric we watch is the percent of positive cases. This is data we can only get from the state because it’s not as simple as factoring a percent of new cases each day from the number of tests. That’s because test results take days and come from a variety of places.

What about closer to home?

Late Tuesday morning, Mecklenburg County released updated information about the spread of the virus in Charlotte.

Cases are up and according to the data, hospitalizations are also rising.

On Monday, more than 180 people were in local hospitals for COVID-19. Currently, an average of 7.8% of people tested in Mecklenburg County are positive -- a slight increase over the past two weeks.

As of Tuesday morning, there were 41,378 cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) with 436 deaths due to COVID-19 reported among Mecklenburg County residents.

Highlights about the 40,890 COVID-19 cases reported in Mecklenburg County as of Nov. 22, 2020 include:

  • About 3 in 4 reported cases were adults ages 20 to 59 years old.
  • About 1 in 20 reported cases were hospitalized due to their COVID-19 infection. While everyone is at risk for severe COVID-19 complications, reported cases who were older adults (≥ 60 years) were more likely to be hospitalized compared to younger individuals.
  • About 8 out of 10 have met CDC criteria to be released from isolation.
  • During the past week, an average of 352 laboratory-confirmed infections were reported compared to the 14-day average of 326 confirmed infections. This represents an increase over the last 14 days. These data are based on Mecklenburg resident cases reported to MCPH.
  • During the past week, an average of 183 individuals with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 infections were hospitalized at acute care facilities in Mecklenburg County. This represents an increase over the last 14 days. These data are based on daily census counts from acute care facilities in Mecklenburg County reporting to MCPH.
  • During the past week, an average of 7.8 percent of individuals who were tested in Mecklenburg County were positive for COVID-19.  This represents a slight increase in trends over the last 14 days. These data only include ELRs for molecular (PCR) tests submitted to NC DHHS for laboratories electronically submitting negative and positive COVID-19 results.
  • Four hundred-thirty-three deaths due to COVID-19 occurred among reported cases.
  • Almost all deaths were among older adults (≥ 60 years), 5 deaths occurred in adults ages 20 to 39 and 57 deaths were adults ages 40 to 59.
  • All deaths, except five, occurred among adults with underlying chronic illnesses.
  • More than half were non-Hispanic Whites. The disparity in COVID-19 deaths among non-Hispanic Whites is related to differences in race/ethnicity of residents of long-term care (LTC) facilities actively experiencing an outbreak.
  • Half of deaths were connected to active outbreaks at long-term care (LTC) facilities.
  • Among deaths not connected to outbreaks at long-term care facilities, nearly 3 in 4 were non-White, with 40 percent being non-Hispanic Black. As previously noted, these disparities are largely driven by higher rates of underlying chronic conditions that increase risk of severe complications due to COVID-19 infection among these communities
  • Based on publicly available mobility tracking data, social distancing slightly increased in Mecklenburg County over the last 14 days.