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Asheville, Buncombe report 250 new coronavirus cases as hospitalizations set record
Saturday, 01 August 2020 15:03

From Staff Reports

Record Bumncombe County coronavirus hopitalizations — once again — were reported at Asheville-based Mission Hospital during the week of July 19-25.

In addition, 250 new cases were identified in residents during that period, according to a report in the July 28 edition of the Asheville Citizen Times.

“On July 27, a total of 1,473 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 had been reported in Buncombe residents, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services,” the ACT noted. “The county reported 46 deaths due to the illness on its own dashboard. Officials said previously that the local case total would lag behind the state’s tally due to manual data entry limitations.”

A week earlier, on July 20, the state reported 1,223 cases in Buncombe, with 42 COVID-19 related deaths, according to Buncombe’s dashboard.

“The July 20 count represented a 325 increase from one week prior,” the ACT noted. “The week before that, cases rose by 215. And the first week of July, the COVID-19 case count was up 111 from the previous week.

‘The county first surpassed 1,000 cases of the illness on July 17, with 55 percent of those cases in the 18-49 age group.’

According to a July 28 release from local health officials, cases in the 18-49 age group have continued to rise and now account for 58 percent of the county’s total.The release added that a majority of Buncombe cases over the past several weeks has been in the 18-49 age group.

In previous remarks, interim health director Dr. Jennifer Mullendore has linked the increase to high-risk activity among residents, such as in“having close contact with others outside their household and not wearing their face coverings.”

About 14 percent of county residents with lab-confirmed COVID-19 have had no symptoms, health officials said, adding that symptomatic individuals can still spread the virus.

“For the first time July 26, Mission Health system — which operates six hospitals in Western North Carolina as well as numerous clinics — reported 40 cases of COVID-19 among hospitalized patients,” the ACT stated. “Of those, 38 were at Mission Hospital in Asheville, one was at Angel Medical Center and one was at Mission Hospital McDowell.

“The system topped that record July 27 with 43 inpatients who were COVID-positive: 42 at Mission Hospital and at Angel Medical Center. It hit a record again July 28 with 48 lab-confirmed positive patients in the health system. Of those, 46 were at Mission Hospital and two were at Angel Medical Center,” the ACT noted.



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