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Rowan County sees 300th death attributed to COVID-19

SALISBURY — About 389 days since Rowan County’s first COVID-19 death was announced, the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reported No. 300.

More than half of the COVID-19 deaths occurred in 2020. A separate spike that started around Thanksgiving reached its peak after the start of the new year and made January the deadliest month for COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic. Coronavirus-caused deaths since the start of March have come slowly, including some weeks with no deaths.

The first COVID-19 death in Rowan County was announced March 27.

COVID-19 deaths in Rowan County have mostly been people 75 or older, with the age group representing 62% of the fatalities since the start of the pandemic. The next-highest age group is 65-74, which represents 19% of the deaths. About 10% of the deaths have been in the 50-64 age group. There have been seven deaths among people age 25 to 49.

Ethnicity and race data is as follows:

• 215 deaths, or 77%, white.

• 30 deaths, or 11%, Black or African American.

• 19 deaths, or 7%, Hispanic.

• Race and ethnic data is not available for 22 deaths.

Rowan County’s number of COVID-19 deaths is larger than all neighboring counties.

Vaccinations continue to make some progress. On Tuesday, NCDHHS reported 34,007 Rowan County residents, or 23.9% of the population, had received at least one dose, which is about 400 greater than the day prior. Second doses increased by a few dozen, to 24,899, or 17.5%.

Novant Health now says anyone who wants to receive a COVID-19 vaccination can now walk into the clinic at the J.F. Hurley Family YMCA without an appointment. The clinic, located in a gymnasium on the side of the facility at 828 Jake Alexander Blvd. West, is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. It also will be open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 8.

The Rowan County Health Department will have an afternoon and evening COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Thursday in the parking lot of West End Plaza on Jake Alexander Boulevard. Hundreds of appointments were still available on Tuesday. People can claim an appointment at rowancountync.gov/covidvaccine.

The number of new positive cases increased by just 14 on Tuesday. There have been 434 positives among Rowan County residents in the previous two weeks.

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