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COVID-19 levels upgraded to 'medium' in Mecklenburg County

The change from low to medium in the county reflects a significant increase in positive cases.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Mecklenburg County moved from CDC COVID-19 community level low/green to COVID-19 community level medium/yellow on Friday.

The COVID-19 community-level tool helps people decide what prevention steps to take based on the latest COVID-19 data in their community. Levels can be low, medium, or high and are determined by looking at hospital beds being used, hospital admissions, and the total number of new COVID-19 cases in an area. The change from low to medium in the county reflects a significant increase in positive cases.

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“This change to the medium level means that people with underlying conditions such as asthma, COPD, high blood pressure, and heart disease or anyone with a weakened immune system should be more cautious now,” Dr. Raynard Washington, Mecklenburg County Public Health (MCPH) Director, said. “To stay safe, all individuals should consider masking, avoid large gatherings, and make sure that you are up to date on COVID vaccines, including booster doses for those who are eligible. If you do have symptoms, please get tested or take a rapid test, and consult with your health care provider about available treatment options.”

RELATED: White House outlines plan for 1st COVID shots for kids under 5

The following are CDC recommendations for people living in counties at the COVID-19 medium community level:

  • If you are at high risk for severe illness, talk to your healthcare provider about whether you need to wear a mask and take other safety precautions.
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Get tested if you have symptoms.

Everyone can take these precautions now to protect themselves and others from COVID-19:

  • Get vaccinated at the two Mecklenburg County Public Health (MCPH) locations (Southeast Health Department, 249 Billingsley Road, Charlotte and Northwest Health Department, 2845 Beatties Ford Road, Charlotte) or at a local provider, pharmacy, or community clinic or event.
  • Get tested if you feel ill, either in person at a provider or testing event or at home using a test kit.
  • If you cannot travel, request a mobile vaccination visit and order free at-home test kits delivered to your home.
  • If you feel ill and are at high risk of hospitalization, visit the federal Test to Treat locator to find locations that offer testing, diagnosis, and treatment in one place.

The CDC COVID-19 tracker has also placed Iredell, Catawba, Cabarrus, Stanly and Union Counties under medium viral impacts.

The tracker shows rising per capita cases, rather than hospital-related metrics, are the main reason for the heightened impact designations.

According to the tracker, Mecklenburg County is seeing about 270 cases per 100,000 people, a measure that takes the county above the low tier. However, per capita hospital admissions for the week were fewer than six, which is considered "low." Just over 2% of staffed hospital beds are being used by coronavirus patients, also considered a "low" level.

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RELATED: State data: One NC county seeing high spread of COVID-19 again, cases climb again

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