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Wilson’s COVID-19 case count edges up; data tallies infections by ZIP code

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Wilson County reported 11 new positive COVID-19 cases Thursday.

Of the county’s 272 total cases, 60% of people have recovered, according to county figures. About 35% of the total cases are active. There are 12 people currently hospitalized due to COVID-19, an increase from Wednesday. No new deaths have been reported in Wilson County this week.

CASES BY ZIP CODE

Earlier this week, the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services unveiled an updated statewide COVID-19 dashboard. That interface gives website visitors the ability to search various categories, including case and death counts by ZIP codes and other demographic information.

State data shows that people who live in Wilson’s 27893 ZIP code account for more than half of the county’s COVID-19 cases, with 142 patients in that area. Wilson’s 27896 ZIP code claims the next-highest total with 55 cases.

Rural Wilson County saw markedly fewer cases than the city of Wilson, with the Elm City area (27822) reporting 19 patients, Lucama (27851) posting 17 and Stantonsburg (27883) adding 12 cases.

To view and search state data, visit covid19.ncdhhs.gov/dashboard.

MULTI-SYSTEM INFLAMMATORY SYNDROME

The state reported its first case of MIS-C, or multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children, associated with COVID-19 on Thursday.

“While children generally experience mild symptoms with COVID-19, recently a possible link has been found between COVID-19 and a serious inflammatory disease in some children and teenagers who have current or recent infections,” the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services explained in a news release.

The first reports of that syndrome came from the United Kingdom in late April and cases in the U.S. were first reported in New York City in early May, according to the state.

State health officials are asking health care providers to report all suspected cases.

“MIS-C is a very rare condition, but as COVID-19 cases increase, additional reports of MIS-C could follow,” according to the state. “Because children with this syndrome may become seriously ill, it is important that parents and caregivers know the signs and symptoms their children may have so they can get help right away.”

Most children with MIS-C have a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher, lasting several days, along with other symptoms, state health officials said.

Other common symptoms include:

• Irritability or decreased activity.

• Abdominal pain without another explanation.

• Diarrhea.

• Vomiting.

• Rash.

• Conjunctivitis (red or pink eyes).

• Poor feeding.

• Red, cracked lips or red, bumpy tongue that looks like a strawberry.

• Swollen hands and feet, which might also be red.

State health officials advise parents to call your child’s doctor immediately if your child has a persistent fever plus any of the above symptoms. The doctor will ask about your child’s symptoms and use that information to recommend next steps. If your child is severely ill, go to the nearest emergency room or call 911 immediately.

MIS-C is not contagious, but children with these symptoms could have COVID-19 or another infection that may be contagious. Parents and caregivers should take precautions to prevent spread, the state health department explained, and health care providers will use infection control precautions when treating your child.

STATEWIDE CASES

North Carolina’s laboratory-confirmed cases increased by nearly 800 on Thursday, bringing the overall total of COVID-19 cases to 20,910, according to state health officials.

The state’s death toll reached 716 people and 578 people are currently hospitalized due to COVID-19.

More than 290,000 tests have been completed statewide.

‘PHASE 2’ REOPENING

After more than two months under the state’s stay-at-home order, North Carolina will move into what’s known as a safer-at-home recommendation, especially for vulnerable populations. North Carolina will move into Phase 2 of reopening its economy at 5 p.m. Friday. This order runs through June 26.

State and local health officials say while some restrictions have been lifted, it’s vital to adhere to the three Ws — wear a face covering, wait 6 feet apart and wash hands often.

North Carolina is evaluating combined data from several categories that shows the state is stable but still has a daily increase in new laboratory-confirmed case counts.

The state looks at a combination of metrics over the preceding 14 days to determine how and whether to ease restrictions. That includes COVID-like syndromic cases, lab-confirmed cases, positive tests as a percentage of total tests and hospitalizations.

State health officials said Wednesday that the syndromic surveillance trend for COVID-like illness is decreasing, but the state’s trajectory of laboratory-confirmed cases is increasing. The state’s trajectory in percentage of tests returning positive has been decreasing and is starting to level, state officials said Wednesday. The state’s hospitalizations rate is level, too.

North Carolina has more than doubled its daily testing rate with more than 8,000 tests per day completed on average, state officials said. The percentage of emergency room visits for COVID-19-like illness is also decreasing.

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