Plan for gradual lifting of entry restrictions to Dare to be announced Tuesday

Published 4:14 pm Monday, April 20, 2020

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On Tuesday, April 21, a Dare County plan “to address lifting of restrictions on entry” to the county will be released.

The announcement came in the Joint Information Center’s Bulletin No. 46 released around 1 p.m. on Monday, April 20.

The bulletin stated that Dare County Control Group had asked staff to prepare the plan, “with careful consideration of the science, trends, data and resource availability . . . while ensuring the safety of our community.”

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“The Control Group has been discussing how and when to best begin lifting restrictions on entry for a couple of weeks,” reports Dorothy Hester, Dare County public information officer. “All related county staff have provided input and been involved in preparing a plan for the Control Group’s consideration. It will be released by email, as a bulletin, tomorrow.”

Monday’s bulletin also reports that no active COVID-19 cases were reported in Dare County over the weekend. The county’s total positive test results remain at 15, with 14 recoveries and one death.

“Dare County healthcare providers are testing individuals who they believe are in need of COVID-19 testing and meet the NC DHHS guidelines for testing which include: fever of 100.4 or higher, cough and respiratory illness,” states the bulletin. “The return time for test results has dramatically improved since testing started in late February. We now are receiving results back within 24 to 72 hours.”

On Monday, Governor Roy Cooper joined a call with Vice President Mike Pence and governors from around the country.

Cooper gave an update on what North Carolina is doing through its Testing Surge Workgroup to increase testing in North Carolina. In particular, he highlighted efforts to diversify the supply chain for testing so that labs aren’t all relying on the same supplies from the same vendors, said a media release, which also stated the vice president was complimentary of North Carolina’s efforts.

The release included the following statement from the governor: “I appreciate the open lines of communication that North Carolina has with the White House. Right now, North Carolina has 14 labs able to test for COVID-19, but to continue increasing our testing numbers we need help from the federal government getting more testing supplies and personal protective equipment. More testing is necessary to be able to start lifting restrictions in a safe way.”

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has convened a Testing Surge Workgroup to develop a plan to increase testing, expand testing sites and options, and address testing supply challenges, including the availability of personal protective equipment, states another media release.

The workgroup is composed of internal NCDHHS staff and leaders from the public and private sector.



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