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NC COVID-19 Update: State death toll just under 5,000; over 3,600 new cases in 24 hours

Free pop-up COVID-19 testing sites set up across Buncombe County
Buncombe County is offering free pop-up testing sites ahead the holiday season. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

As of Friday, Nov. 20, health officials reported the state has seen a total of 328,846 lab-confirmed cases of the virus, that's 11,351 new cases reported since Tuesday and 3,688 new cases since Thursday.


The state's virus-related death-toll stands at 4,979, and there are 1,571 people currently hospitalized with the coronavirus.

The new County Alert System currently lists 10 counties as Red and 43 counties as Orange. Click here for more details.


COVID-19 in Western North Carolina: (As of Nov. 20, 2020. Numbers are subject to change)

  • Avery: 838 cases, 3 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Buncombe: 5,075 cases, 121 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Cherokee: 887 cases, 15 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Clay: 269 cases, 5 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Graham: 268 cases, 11 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Haywood: 963 cases, 38 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Henderson: 2,908 cases, 70 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Jackson: 1,315 cases, 8 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Macon: 886 cases, 8 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Madison: 428 cases, 7 death, according to NCDHHS
  • McDowell: 1,647 cases, 34 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Mitchell: 447 cases, 4 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Polk: 449 cases, 13 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Rutherford: 2,136 cases, 73 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Swain: 359 cases, 5 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Transylvania: 502 cases, 9 deaths, according to NCDHHS
  • Yancey: 476 cases, 2 deaths, according to NCDHHS

Haywood County Alert

Haywood County Public Health received notice of 84 new cases of COVID-19 since the last press release on Nov. 13, 2020. As of 5 p.m. Nov. 19, 2020, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has recorded 931 cases in Haywood County.

Aside from clusters and outbreaks at long term care facilities, the ongoing trend in new cases seems to be people letting their guard down around people close to them and inadvertently sharing more than friendship. That false sense of security around people outside of our own households is enabling the spread of COVID-19.

“With our rapidly rising case count this week and holidays coming right up, the key message this week is simple: please wear a mask and keep at least six feet of distance any time you’re going to be around anyone who doesn’t live in your household, no matter how well you know them, no matter whether they are close friends, coworkers, extended family, or just people on the street. It’s the only tool we have right now to minimize rapid spread in our schools, workplaces, churches, families, and community. We can’t mandate a sense of personal responsibility; it’s up to each individual to understand the moral imperative of practicing these simple interventions to keep their loved ones safe and minimize the impact of the pandemic on their community,” said Interim Haywood County Health Director Garron Bradish.

As of 5 p.m., Nov. 19, 2020, Haywood County’s COVID-19 working number, representing individuals who are in isolation or quarantine due to exposure, is 302 people. Of these, 90 cases are in isolation after testing positive and 212 people are in quarantine, having been identified as a close contact of a known case during contact tracing. All are being monitored by the Haywood County COVID-19 contact tracing team.