Novant: Tracking COVID-19 case spread is harder to do at this point in pandemic

CHARLOTTE — Novant Health says it has seen an increase in COVID-19 patients over the past few weeks, but the number is still well below the January peak.

Experts say it is harder to get a full picture of case spread because more people are testing at home or not taking a COVID test at all.

Novant believes we will likely see a larger surge heading into the fall, but we don’t know what the full impact will look like.

“It’s hard to pin down exactly what would happen,” said Dr. David Priest, the Novant Health chief safety, quality, and epidemiology officer. “I think certainly we would see increased cases. Now whether that leads to increased hospitalizations and deaths really is going to depend on the variant that comes through and how well it evades current immunity.”

If there is a large increase in hospitalizations and deaths, Dr. Priest says we may need to reimplement some public health measures. But, he added they have learned a lot over the last two years and have new tools to help stop the spread and treat the virus.

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