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New Hanover County health officials talk covid numbers, the mask mandate, and the flu

Published: Oct. 18, 2021 at 8:53 AM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - New Hanover County Health and Human services is offering a a drive thru flu vaccine clinic. It starts Monday and will be open from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. through Oct. 29.

The typical flu season is October-May. Health officials are urging people to get the flu vaccine as soon as possible especially because we are still battling covid-19. There are concerns we will see a “twindemic.”

“I think we keep the forefront of it in our mind. It was the same concern last year at this time but, last year we saw drastically reduced numbers of the flu. A lot of that would be contributed to the masks we had on, we were still keeping distance, kids weren’t in school all together at the same time. So all of that had an impact on flu numbers, " said Carla Turner, Assistant Health Director New Hanover County.

The New Hanover County Health and Human Services Board implemented a mask mandate in August. The numbers are improving but lifting the mandate is up to the board.

“Since it was put in place by the HHS board it has to be repealed by the HHS board. We are keeping track at health and human services of our data, of the metrics. We’re looking good in that we’re sitting at 5.1% positivity for COVID from testing and that’s very encouraging. The numbers in some of our surrounding counties are higher. We are the lowest in the three county area. The HHS board has their normal monthly meeting tomorrow and so we’re share the metrics with them and the COVID update and they will make the determination as to if they want to have a schedule a special meeting because that’s how it works, they have to have a special meeting to determine what they want to do but that will be completely up to the health and human services board,” said Turner.

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