ASHE COUNTY — Ashe County has seen a drop in COVID-19 cases during the past few weeks with 31 current active cases, 85 individuals being monitored and 1969 total according to data distributed by AppHealthCare. There have been 44 virus related deaths thus far.

In neighboring counties, AppHealthCare reported 111 active cases with a total of 31 deaths in Watauga and 18 active cases in Alleghany who only has 4 deaths so far.

North Carolina had 824,352 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of noon on Feb. 15 according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. 1,941 are currently hospitalized in the state.

John Hopkins University & Medicine has reported 109,254,004 cases total since the beginning of the pandemic. 2,410,619 deaths have occurred.

COVID-19 vaccines have continued to be delivered in Ashe County with a total of 2,200 first doses received as of Feb. 12 according to AppHealthCare. All of those doses have been administered. As for second doses, there have been 1,760 total and 780 of those have been administered.

“We are encouraged by the many partners and volunteers who have been critical in coming together to help administer COVID-19 vaccine to our community. We could not do it without the local support and willingness to get shots in arms. We are still receiving limited supplies of vaccine but are hopeful this will increase so more people can be vaccinated. Due to the limited supplies, you may have to wait to get the vaccine but everyone will have a spot to get their shot,” said Jennifer Greene, health director at AppHealthCare.

There are currently 5,861 individuals who are eligible for the vaccine.

Ashe County has remained in the orange stage of the virus, having substantial community spread.

Free testing through appointment at AppHealthCare is offered with a result turnaround time of two to four days. These appointments can be made online or by phone, (828)-795-1970. Appointments are scheduled Monday through Thursday.

The health department is encouraging those interested to fill out a COVID-19 vaccine interest form which can be found on AppHealthCare’s website: www.apphealthcare.com.

AppHealthCare is continuing case investigation and contact tracing efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19. If you receive a call from a member of the case investigation or contact tracing team, AppHealthCare urges you to cooperate and provide information that will help conduct response efforts. Calls will be from (844) 628-7223 or (828) 264-4995. It may also show up as “NC Outreach” or “Contact Tracing.”

AppHealthCare encourages citizens to remember the three W’s: wear a mask, watch your distance and wash your hands.

The full text of Executive Order No. 188 may be viewed by visiting https://files.nc.gov/governor/documents/files/EO188-Extension-of-Modified-Stay-at-Home-Order.pdf.

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