BEAUFORT — Health officials announced Friday afternoon the first case of COVID-19 has been confirmed in Carteret County.
According to a release from the Carteret County Health Department, the individual who tested positive for COVID-19 recently returned from international travel and began showing symptoms after returning to North Carolina. The individual was tested for COVID-19 March 18 and confirmation of a positive COVID-19 test result was received at the health department Friday from the N.C. State Laboratory of Public Health.
This individual is in isolation at home at this time, according to officials. Carteret County Health Department’s Communicable Disease staff is working at this time to conduct contact tracing to make sure everyone who came into close contact with this individual is quarantined. Close contact is defined as anyone who was within 6 feet of the individual for 10 minutes or more.
To protect individual privacy, no further information will be released.
“There is nothing to indicate this was a community-acquired transmission,” Carteret County Health Director Stephanie Cannon said. “All indications are this was travel-related. We are following all state protocols for contact tracing.”
According to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, at this time there are no approved treatments and no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. However, there are known methods to reduce and slow the spread of infection.
Individuals can practice everyday prevention measures like frequent hand washing, staying home when sick, disinfecting surfaces and covering coughs and sneezes. Community-based interventions can also slow the spread of COVID-19. This includes measures collectively known as social distancing.
Social distancing measures aim to reduce the frequency of contact and increase physical distance between persons, thereby reducing the risks of person-to-person transmission. Implementation of these measures can slow the spread of this disease, according to health officials.
For more information on Carteret County specific information regarding COVID-19, call the inquiry line at 252-726-7060.