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Governor limits indoor gatherings to 10 people to slow COVID-19
Thursday, 19 November 2020 20:49

Cooper keeps N.C. in Phase 3 restrictions until Dec. 4

From Staff Reports 

RALEIGH — Governor Roy Cooper announced on Nov. 10 that North Carolina’s indoor mass gathering limit will be lowered to 10 people — from the previous maximum of 25 people — in an effort to drive down North Carolina’s key COVID-19 metrics. 

Executive Order 176, which continues to “pause” the state in Phase 3, went into effect on Nov. 13 and will remain in place through 5 p.m. Dec. 4.“

This reduction in our indoor gathering limit aims to slow the spread and bring down our numbers,” Cooper said. at the briefing “It also sends a serious signal to families, friends and neighbors across our state. Success in slowing the spread will help our businesses.”

As the weather gets colder, more people will be gathering indoors, a press release from the governor’s office on the event stated, adding that science has shown that indoor gatherings increase risk of transmission of COVID-19, and the executive order seeks to limit indoor gatherings that could rapidly and dangerously spread the virus.

The order does not change the reduced capacity limits for certain businesses that have already been laid out, the release noted.

Cooper and Dr. Mandy Cohen, the state DHHS secretary, also underscored the need for people to wear a mask anytime they gather with people outside of their immediate household.

As the holiday season approaches, NCDHHS released health guidance to help people celebrate as safely as possible without spreading the virus.

“Let’s keep our friends, family and loved ones safe this holiday season. If you are going to travel or get together, plan ahead to reduce the risk to your family and friends,” Cohen said at the press briefing. “Remember, it’s not how well you know someone when it comes to wearing a mask. If they don’t live with you, get behind the mask.”

Cohen also provided an update on North Carolina’s data and trends as follows. 

Trajectory in COVID-Like Illness (CLI) Surveillance Over 14 Days 
North Carolina’s syndromic surveillance trend for COVID-like illness is decreasing but still elevated.

Trajectory of Confirmed Cases Over 14 Days 
North Carolina’s trajectory of cases is increasing. 

Trajectory in Percent of Tests Returning Positive Over 14 Days 
North Carolina’s trajectory in percent of tests returning positive is level but above 5 percent.


Trajectory in Hospitalizations Over 14 Days 
North Carolina’s trajectory of hospitalizations is level but high. In addition to these metrics, the state continues building capacity to adequately respond to an increase in virus spread in testing, tracing and prevention, Cohen said.

Testing capacity is high

Tracing Capability
The state is continuing to hire contact tracers to bolster the efforts of local health departments. There have been almost 350,000 downloads of the exposure notification app, SlowCOVIDNC. 

Personal Protective Equipment
North Carolina’s personal protective equipment supplies are stable. Also on Nov. 10, Governor Cooper announced that full-service restaurants are now eligible for assistance through the Mortgage, Utility and Rent Relief Program, administered by the NC Department of Commerce.


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