New data to be released, COVID cases continue to rise – WRAL News

The state released COVID-19 data on Wednesday, providing a clearer picture today of a surge in COVID-19 cases in North Carolina as cases increase but deaths remain lower than this time last year.
The state released COVID-19 data on Wednesday, providing a clearer picture today of a surge in COVID-19 cases in North Carolina.
Infections have been on the rise for weeks now. Data released at noon by the state Department of Health and Human Services indicated there were 68% more virus particles in wastewater than last week, the highest prevalence since Jan. 19, 2022.
According to the state, "COVID-19 virus particles appearing in wastewater can signal how quickly the virus is spreading, even if people don't get tested or have symptoms."
COVID-19 cases reported to the state are down 11%, largely driven by more people taking at-home tests instead of visiting testing sites.
Data from wastewater particles provide a better indicator of where COVID-19 cases stand.
The number of people admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 is up 5% week over week, but ER visits are down, state data shows.
Wake County is ramping up testing sites in the area as COVID-19 cases increase.
Over the past few months, COVID has taken a back seat to other illnesses, such as RSV, influenza and the flu. Health officials said COVID is now the more dominant virus they’re treating patients for.
The CDC’s transmission map already shows the majority of the state in Orange, which is the highest risk level for the spread of COVID-19.
Durham, Orange and Cumberland Counties are included in that high risk category. Wake County is at a "medium" risk level.
As college students head back on campus this week for the new semester, WRAL News has reached out to local universities to see if they’re considering any new guidance. Right now, Duke is the only university considering a mask mandate if the data doesn’t improve.
More than 50 people died from the virus the first week of 2023.
The recent COVID data shows that older North Carolinians continue to be disproportionately affected in the most severe ways, winding up in the hospitals and sometimes not surviving.
While COVID numbers are rising, the data shows we are well below where we were this time last year, when North Carolina had more than 400 people dying from COVID per week.
And more than 10 times that were in the hospital.
The data shows that only 35 percent of north Carolinians who are 65 or older have received the most updated booster.
The data shows staying up to date on your COVID vaccine and boosters is incredibly important. Doctors say that protecting yourself, no matter what your age, is critical because you don’t know who you could be spreading it to and they might be part of one of these more vulnerable populations.
Copyright 2023 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.