MOREHEAD CITY — There was a nearly 9.5% increase in the number of communicable disease cases reported in Carteret County in 2019 compared to the previous year.
While there was an uptick in several categories of the communicable disease report, Donna Faiella, communicable disease nurse with the County Health Department, said she didn’t see any areas of major concern.
She added there were some positive things.
“There were no influenza adult deaths for 2019,” she said during the Consolidated Human Services Board meeting, held Monday via Zoom. “We’ve had no active TB (tuberculosis) cases for three years.”
There were 15 cases of TB/latent tuberculosis infection in 2019, compared to 18 in 2018. LTBI is a persistent immune response to stimulation by Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens without manifesting active TB.
In total, there were 672 communicable disease cases reported by county health officials in 2019, up from 615 the previous year, a nearly 9.5% increase. Cases of COVID-19 were in the 2019 report since cases did not show up in Carteret County until 2020.
There’s a wide range of diseases included in the report, from Hepatitis C to influenza and sexually transmitted diseases.
There was a 24% increase in cases of Hepatitis C. There were 172 cases reported in 2019, compared to 131 in 2018.
There was an overall increase in STDs, with 320 cases reported in 2019, up from 296 the previous year, a 3% increase. Types of reportable STDs include chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV/AIDS, syphilis and nongonococcal urethritis.
There were 248 cases of chlamydia, 49 cases of gonorrhea, four incidents of syphilis and 19 cases of nongonococcal urethritis reported, but no new reported cases of HIV/AIDS, compared to three in 2018.
One category she pointed out was three incidents in 2019 of carbapenenum-resistant enterobacteriaceae, which is a resistant bacterium primarily caught in hospital settings. There were no cases reported in the county in 2018.
Another positive number she pointed out was a decrease in salmonella cases, which went from 50 in 2018 to 39 in 2019. Ms. Faiella said the reason the numbers were higher in 2018 was because people kept food that should have been discarded following Hurricane Florence in 2018.
In other action, the board:
- Approved a request to accept $11,323 in additional federal Immunization Action Plan funds.
- Approved a request to accept $97,153 in federal COVID-19 infection prevention support funds.
- Approved a request to accept $5,000 in federal funds for a Women, Infants and Children breastfeeding peer counselor program.
- Approved a request to accept $13,332 in additional WIC federal funds.
- Approved a County Cepartment of Social Services local childcare waiting list policy.
- Approved a 2020 Consolidated Human Services Board policy review.
- Approved a request to accept $74,008 in federal Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act funds for DSS.
- Participated in a brief health department board training.
Contact Cheryl Burke at 252-726-7081, ext. 255; email Cheryl@thenewstimes.com; or follow on Twitter @cherylccnt.