COVID positivity rate surpasses 15 percent in one-third of NC’s counties


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The rate of positive COVID-19 tests in one-third of North Carolina’s counties is at least triple what the state wants it to be.

The map posted Friday by the state Department of Health and Human Services showed 33 counties where the average percent positive is 15 percent or higher.

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(Source: NCDHHS)

DHHS wants the percentage of tests determined to be positive to be 5 percent or lower for at least 14 consecutive days.

A month ago, only nine counties had a rate that high.

(Source: NCDHHS)

Most of the counties colored deep purple on the map — indicating the highest rate of positive tests — were near the South Carolina border or in the western mountains, though Johnston, Lee and Moore counties in the CBS 17 area also had the darkest shade.

Only 14 counties were colored white, indicating they are not doing enough tests to produce a reliable percent positive. A month ago, about a quarter of counties failed to meet the minimum threshold of averaging at least 50 tests each day over a two-week span.

Statewide, DHHS said Friday that 12.8 percent of tests performed Wednesday were found to be positive. The statewide rate has been 10 percent or higher for 26 consecutive days.

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