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Burke adds 12 COVID-19 cases to total, new testing sites expected
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Burke adds 12 COVID-19 cases to total, new testing sites expected

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Twelve new cases of COVID-19 were added to the county’s total, but nearly 88 percent of the cases have recovered.

The new cases brought the county’s total up to 2,193, according to Tuesday’s media briefing from the Burke County Health Department. Six people remain hospitalized from COVID-19, while 1,918 people have recovered, according to the county’s online COVID-19 dashboard. The county has logged 41 total deaths related to COVID-19.

County health officials updated information on the area’s 39th reported death.

Originally, county health officials reported that a person in their 90s who had been hospitalized died a COVID-associated death, the county’s media briefing said. The health department received the person’s official death certificate Tuesday, which listed their death as a COVID-related death.

Lisa Moore, public information officer for Burke County, explained the differences between the two terms. 

"By the State's definition, COVID-associated are those who die from their underlying medical condition but have tested positive for COVID," Moore said in an email to the newspaper. "COVID-related are those that may or may not have had underlying medical conditions but died due to strictly COVID related conditions."

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Burke is one of 28 counties that will be getting turnkey testing sites after the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services selected a new vendor to offer COVID-19 testing.

There will be no copay or cost-sharing at the testing sites, including for those who are uninsured, NCDHHS said in a press release.

Burke County is not in the first phase of the new testing sites, but the county health department will send out information on additional testing sites in a media briefing as soon as it becomes available.

The state’s positivity rate for COVID-19 rose slightly to 5 percent, up from 4.8 percent Monday, according to NCDHHS. The county’s positivity rate remained the same at 9.7 percent.

Following the three Ws – wearing a cloth face covering, waiting 6 feet away from others and washing hands frequently or using hand sanitizer – remain an important piece of protecting against the spread of COVID-19.

Health officials continue to urge anyone who has been tested for the novel coronavirus to remain at home until they receive their test results back. It takes about 1.9 days to receive test results back, according to NCDHHS.

To make an appointment for COVID-19 testing at the Burke County Health Department, call 828-764-9150. For questions about the virus, call the county’s public information line at 828-764-9168.

Para español llame al 764-9150 y presione el número dos. Si nadie contesta deje un corto mensaje con su nombre y numero de teléfono.

Chrissy Murphy is a staff writer and can be reached at cmurphy@morganton.com or at 828-432-8941. Follow @cmurphyMNH on Twitter.

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