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UPDATE: 2 dead from COVID-19 cases tied to Charlotte church event

CDC / Alissa Eckert, MS
CDC / Alissa Eckert, MS(KWQC)
Published: Oct. 21, 2020 at 9:49 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Health officials in North Carolina say a COVID-19 outbreak linked to a church has left at least two people dead.

The Charlotte Observer reports Mecklenburg County authorities said Wednesday that there are now 68 cases since the local health department initially reported the outbreak on Saturday.

That was one week after the multi-day event at the United House of Prayer for All People in Charlotte on Oct. 11. The county says four people have been hospitalized.

County officials also have notified other local health departments in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, New Jersey and New York to monitor for cases connected to the church events.

Health officials in a North Carolina county say they are investigating at least 50 confirmed cases of COVID-19 connected to an event at a church.

The Charlotte Observer reported that Mecklenburg County urged all people who attended convocation events at the United House of Prayer for All People on Oct. 10 and 11 to get tested. At the time, the county linked at least nine cases of COVID-19 to the weekend event.

Mecklenburg County Deputy Health Director Raynard Washington says the number has nearly tripled. Washington says the church made an effort to ensure masks were worn and that those attending practiced social distancing, but he said people didn’t always comply.

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