After nearly a year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, Warren County is starting to have days with no new cases of the novel coronavirus. That was the report from health director Dr. Margaret Brake in the monthly update during Monday’s county commissioners’ meeting. 

To-date, the county has had 20 deaths from COVID-19 and, as of Monday afternoon, no hospitalizations and only three active cases. 

“I really want to commend our residents for just taking precautions and doing what they can to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” Brake said. “We are seeing improvement in our cases, which we had not been seeing before.”

With the demand slowing down for vaccines, the health department has shifted from mass vaccination clinics to holding weekly in-house and community-based clinics, trying to make vaccines more accessible in different areas of the county.

Upcoming clinics are planned at Kim’s Vinyard, 408 Largo Rd., Norlina, in the Afton-Elberon community on Friday, June 11, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.; and at Perfecting Praise Ministries, 205-B Center St., Norlina, on Tuesday, June 15, from 4-7 p.m., phone 252-213-5337.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, call the Warren County Health Department at 252-257-1185. Walk-ins are also welcome.

Transportation to COVID-19 vaccination appointments for people under age 60 is available through KARTS by calling 252-438-2573; people age 60 or over should call the Warren County Senior Center at 252-257-3111.

Brake said that 43 percent of the county’s population has had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and about 40 percent of the population is fully vaccinated. Around 58 percent of those who have received the vaccine are age 60 or older.

“We do need the 50 and younger crowd to come in greater numbers,” she said.

Brake again thanked community members for their efforts to prevent COVID-19 and also for getting vaccinated.

“We have a lot of good vaccine ambassadors here in Warren County, a lot of our seniors, and they are talking to people in their communities,” she said. “And we know that getting the vaccine not only protects us as individuals, but it also protects our families and our communities.”