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Update on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

3/30/2020

This is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation and updated information will be provided as it becomes available.
The information on this page was last updated on 3/30/2020.

COVID-19 Update Header, with red background of rendered virus
ALERTThere are 333 positive COVID-19 cases in Mecklenburg County.

As the number of COVID-19 cases continue to rise in Mecklenburg County, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Emergency Management Office has announced a Stay at Home order for County residents. This order supersedes all previous and other local orders and state orders. The State has issued a Stay at Home Order for the State of North Carolina effective at 5 p.m. March 30. The most restrictive Order in any situation has authority.

Mecklenburg County Public Health (MCPH) considers novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to be a very serious public health threat and has declared a State of Emergency. The declaration allows the County access to state and federal funds to offset the costs of fighting the pandemic. 

Follow the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) for statewide information and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for national and international information.

Questions about the Stay at Home order can be directed to the Stay at Home Order Call Center at 704-353-1926.


What You Need To Know

  • COVID-19 is a respiratory illness due to a new type of coronavirus (novel coronavirus).
  • Symptoms include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.
  • COVID-19 is spread mainly from person-to-person among close contacts of individuals infected with this virus.
  • It’s important to remember that diseases, including COVID-19, can make anyone sick regardless of their race or nationality.


The most up to date information is tavailable on the CDC website.


Important Information:

  • On March 24, Mecklenburg County issued a stay at home order, effective 8am, March 26 until April 16
  • On March 23, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued an executive order:
    • Prohibiting mass gatherings of 50 or more people,
    • Closing hair salons and barber shops, gyms, movie theaters and similar businesses offering activities that run counter to social distancing, by 5 p.m. Wednesday March 25, and
    • Extending the closure of NC Public Schools K-12 until May 15.
  • On March 20, the State Department issued a Level 4 Travel Advisory warning all Americans to avoid all international travel.
  • On March 17, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued an executive order closing restaurants and bars for dine-in service.

If you believe you've come into contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 (2019 Novel Coronavirus) here is how you can determine your risk of contracting the virus.

NO RISK: Waiting by or briefly being in the same room as a person who tested positive for COVID-19 and experiencing symptons (fever, cough, shortness of breath)
LOW RISK: Being in the same room as a person who tested positive for COVID-19 and had symptoms, but you were not within six feet.
MEDIUM RISK: Sustained close contact (10 minutes or longer) within six feet of a person with COVID-19 while presenting symptoms.
HIGH RISK: Close household contacts of people with a confirmed case of COVID-19 are at an elevated risk.

What is my risk of infection?

The risk of infection depends on exposure. Currently, North Carolina and Mecklenburg County are seeing community transmission of COVID-19, which means everyone is at risk for contacting COVID-19 and should take appropriate precautions.

Individuals who are at higher risk of getting very sick with COVID-19 include:

• Age 65 years and older

• Live in a nursing home or long-term care facility

• Have a high-risk medical condition including chronic lung disease, heart disease, obesity, a weakened immune system, or other underlying medical conditions

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever, cough or shortness of breath, call your healthcare provider or the public health department at 980-314-9400. Mecklenburg County Public Health is working closely with the local hospital systems and community providers to coordinate access to care, including triage/evaluation for COVID-19 and testing when indicated.

Not all individuals with symptoms of COVID-19 need to be tested.

Mecklenburg County Public Health will continue working to make COVID-19 evaluation/triage and testing available to all who need it in our community.  To talk with a medical professional about testing for COVID-19, call your healthcare provider or the public health department at 980-314-9400.

If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or believe you may have the infection, you should avoid contact with others as much as possible (isolation). 

You can stop isolating yourself when you answer YES to ALL three questions:

  • Has it been at least 7 days since you first had symptoms? 
  • Have you been without fever for three days (72 hours) without any medicine for fever? 
  • Are your other symptoms improved?


Call your healthcare provider if your symptoms are getting worse or you have any concerns about your health.


Prevention

MCPH recommends the public take the following steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19:

  • Follow the Stay-at-Home order for County residents
  • Avoid non-essential travel.
  • Practice social distancing:
    • Stay at home unless you must report to work for an essential service.
    • Avoid crowds.
  • In public, stay at least six feet away from other people.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning product.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.  If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%–95% alcohol.

Still have questions? View Frequently Asked Questions
or call the Mecklenburg County Public Health Hotline at 980-314-9400.
Hotline is available Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm and Saturday-Sunday, 10am-2pm.



Resources



Watch the latest MCPH COVID-19 Press Conference
Watch the latest MCPH COVID-19 Press Conference.








close alert Health Alert: To prevent spread of COVID-19, County services are operating at a limited capacity.