Counties in Eastern Carolina rank high on COVID-19 death rates survey

Published: Nov. 16, 2021 at 8:10 PM EST
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JONES COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - Jones County ranks number four in Stacker’s list of counties with the highest COVID-19 death rate in North Carolina.

The data analysis group made the list by calculating the total number of each county’s deaths per 100,000 people. Jones County had 34 deaths of its population and it was compared with other counties, many much larger, in Stacker’s formula.

Martin County also made the list at number 10.

Experts say the solution is simple to staying safe from COVID-19, no matter where one lives.

“I think getting vaccinated would be the single best thing to do,” Dr. Ronald May, CarolinaEast Health System medical affairs vice president said.

According to the state, about 50% of the population in Jones County is fully vaccinated.

In hopes to increase that number, Jones County is bringing vaccines to rural towns in the county.

“They’re going out into the little outlying areas Pollocksville, Maysville, Comfort. They’re trying to get people in those areas, but they’re just not having people show up for their events,” Ann Pike, Jones County Health Department nursing supervisor said.

Pike explains that low turnout could have something to do with resources.

“We depend on a lot of social media and word of mouth. I mean, we don’t have a TV station, we don’t have a radio station, we don’t have a newspaper. So I think that maybe as well as other rural counties, plays a big part in people not finding out what’s been going on.”

Ann Pike, Jones County Health Department nursing supervisor

As temperatures drop, health care providers are working to spread the word ahead of what could be another spike.

“They’re concerned across the country right now because they’re starting to see an uptick of COVID infections in some of the states that are colder right now,” May said, in regard to medical experts.

Other counties in the East are on Stacker’s list too, including Duplin and Washington. Duplin was ranked number 12 and Washington number 15.

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