CCHD COVID-19 Update #5 (March 24, 2020)…Caldwell County Has First Confirmed COVID-19 Case

LENOIR, NC (March 24, 2020) — Here is the Caldwell County Health Department COVID-19 Update for Tuesday, March 24, 2020. 

Caldwell County
Confirmed COVID-19 Cases
COVID-19 Tests Conducted Negative Tests
1 324 32

Updated at 4:00 p.m. March 24

Caldwell County Health Department, in collaboration with Caldwell UNC Health Care, announce the county’s first positive case of COVID-19. The patient has been instructed to remain in isolation until they are fever free for 72 hours without medication and/or symptom free for seven days. Caldwell County Public Health is investigating to determine contacts.

“To slow the spread of COVID-19, we urge people to stay home if they are sick, practice social distancing, wash hands for at least 20 seconds, and wipe down surfaces,” said Caldwell County Health Director Anna Martin.

New guidance from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services instructs people with mild symptoms consistent with COVID-19 do not need testing and are encouraged to stay at home to recover and call their doctor if needed. Mild symptoms are defined as fever and cough without shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. If a person has shortness of breath, chest pain or pressure, difficulty breathing, blue lips, or confusion, they should call their doctor or 911 right away.

Patients can call their health care provider, if they need medical care. If the patient does not have a primary care provider, they should call urgent care or the health department. Once screened, the patient will be instructed regarding further recommended action. If appropriate, the patient will be referred to UNC Caldwell’s drive-through Respiratory Diagnostic Clinic or the health department.

Testing is most important for people who are seriously ill, in the hospital, people in high-risk settings like nursing homes or long-term care facilities, and healthcare workers and other first responders who are caring for those with COVID-19.

 Individuals who are at higher risk of getting very sick with COVID-19 should call their doctor if they develop symptoms of fever or cough. Those at higher risk:

  • Are 65 years and older
  • Live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
  • Have a high-risk condition that includes: chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma, heart disease with complications, compromised immune system, severe obesity, body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher, other underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, such as diabetes, renal failure, or liver disease

After this news release, we will no longer be sending news releases for each new case. Numbers will be updated daily at 4:30 p.m.

For information about Coronavirus, visit or call the Caldwell County Health Department Health Information Line at 828-426-8456.