NC coronavirus updates: Case count tops 136,000

We’re tracking the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus in North Carolina. Check back for updates.

Cases top 136,000

At least 136,218 people in North Carolina have tested positive for the coronavirus and 2,168 have died, according to state health officials.

The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services on Sunday reported an additional 1,453 cases of COVID-19, down from 1,954 the day before.

The health department also reported an additional 8 deaths Sunday.

Nearly 2 million total coronavirus tests have been completed in North Carolina.

On Saturday — the latest date available — 6% of tests were positive. A positive rate of less than 5% for two weeks is an indication the spread of the virus is under control.

May was the last time the percentage fell to 6%. It’s fluctuated between 7% and 10% since June.

Hospitalizations decrease

At least 1,109 people in North Carolina were reportedly hospitalized with COVID-19 on Sunday, down from 1,129 reported on Saturday.

Reported hospitalizations usually fall on Sundays as fewer hospitals report data to the state. Sundays total is based on data from 84% of hospitals.

Daily reported hospitalizations have fallen since reaching record daily high of 1,236 July 28.

July 7 was the last time reported hospitalizations fell below 1,000. Data on hospitalizations are preliminary and can be updated.

Students return during pandemic

Public health experts in the Triangle now have an added challenge to the COVID-19 pandemic: students returning to college campuses.

Students starting moving back to campus this week, and responses from local health departments have varied.

Orange County Health Director Quintana Stewart sent a memo asking UNC-Chapel Hill to have classes completely online for the fall semester or at least for the first five weeks of school.

Durham and Wake County officials have been advising local universities but say they will not make recommendations on student housing or in-person classes, The News & Observer reports.

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Bailey Aldridge is a reporter covering real-time news in North and South Carolina. She has a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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