Fourth Watauga County resident tests positive for coronavirus

Moss Brennan, Reporter

A Watauga County resident became the fourth person to test positive for the novel coronavirus, AppHealthCare announced Thursday morning. This person has travel history and has been in isolation since being tested. Local public health staff identified close contacts to the person, and those contacts have been in quarantine.

“We recognize that another case may cause increasing concern in the community. Remember, you can help us slow the spread of this virus. Stay home to the greatest extent that you are able, especially if you are a person who is at a higher risk for severe illness. If you do become ill, call your health care provider or call AppHealthCare to speak with a public health staff member before going to your provider or the emergency room,” Jennifer Greene, health director at AppHealthCare, said in a press release.

AppHealthCare is working closely with local partners and agencies to ensure the public’s health is protected.

How to Protect Yourself

  • Practice social distancing which means avoiding gatherings, keeping 6 feet or more between you and others and remaining at home to the greatest extent possible
  • Frequent hand washing
  • Stay home when you’re sick
  • Keep distance from others who are sick
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces in common areas like doorknobs, remotes, lightswitches, tables and handles

COVID-19 Signs & Symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

People at high risk include those who:

  • Are 65 years of age or older
  • Live in a nursing home or long-term care facility

Or have a high-risk condition, including:

  • Chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • Heart disease with complications
  • Compromised immune system
  • Severe obesity – body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher
  • Other underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, such as diabetes, renal failure or liver disease

People who are at high risk should stay home to the greatest extent possible to decrease the chance of infection.

Additional Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at

North Carolina resources can be found on the Division of Public Health website at

A COVID-19 toll free helpline has been set up to answer general, non-emergent questions at 1-866-462-3821. To submit questions online, go to and select “chat.”