Polk COVID case count still down

Published 4:11 pm Friday, November 19, 2021

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Percent positive rate is 3.5 percent, less than previous weeks

POLK COUNTY—If this trend continues, Polk County Schools current mask mandate will be changed to optional soon. 

The Polk County Department of Health and Human Services released its COVID dashboard on Friday, with the county adding 19 cases this week and the percent positive being only 3.5 percent. 

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The Polk County School Board decided this month that if the county’s percent positive remains at under 5 percent for 2 weeks they would change the current mask mandate to students and staff wearing masks on an optional basis. Currently, masks are required for all students and staff at all schools. 

Last week the county added 14 new cases, which has been the lowest the county has seen in many weeks. Last week’s percent positive rate was 7.7 percent, however. 

The county did add another death this week from the virus, up from 48 last week to 49 this week. The county also added another hospitalization since last week, up from 95 to 96 hospitalizations this week. 

The county has now had a total of 2,353 cases of COVID-19 since March 2020. 

The county’s percentage of its population that is vaccinated remained at 43 percent this week. 

As of Friday, 9,393 Polk County residents had at least 1 dose of the vaccine and 8,867 Polk County residents are fully vaccinated, according to the county’s latest data. 

Polk County’s positive cases overall have been mostly in females at 53.44 percent this week. 

Most of the county’s cases have been in people age 25-49, followed by people age 50-64; people age 65-74 and people age 0-17. The least cases have been in people age 75 and above and 18-24. 

Vaccines are free for anyone and are now being administered to everyone age 12 and older in North Carolina. 

Booster shots are now also available to many qualified people. 

To schedule an appointment with the county, people can call the Polk County COVID message line at 828-722-5086. More information is also available on a special COVID-19 tab located at polknc.org. 

Local pharmacies are also now giving vaccines for the virus as well as for flu and pneumonia.