COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus

Information For Citizens & Visitors of
Franklin & Macon County NC

Macon County NC, Information & Resources

The COVID-19 state of emergency issued in Macon County has been officially terminated. Macon County officials still encourage both residents and visitors to follow health and safety guidelines. And, if you have not had a COVID-19 vaccine, you are urged to do so. Call Macon County Public Health at 828-349-2081 to schedule your vaccination.

September 17 - COVID-19 Case Count Update:
463 Active Cases of COVID-19 in Macon County
4,117 Recovered • 54 Deaths • 4,634 Total Cases

Total First Dose Vaccines Given by MCPH & Off-Site: 13,016 (second dose vaccines not reflected in total)

Macon's status RED or HIGH Covid-19 Transmission Impact in COVID-19
» CDC Transmission Map - Choose State and Macon County or other counties of interest

September 13, 2021 - Macon County Reports Five (5) Additional Deaths Related to COVID-19

Macon County Public Health received notification that five (5) Macon County residents, (one between 25-49 years old, two between 50-64 years old, one between 65-74 years old and one over 75 years old), who were diagnosed with COVID-19 have passed away. To protect the families’ privacy, no additional information will be released about these individuals. These deaths bring Macon County to fifty-four (54) deaths related to COVID-19.

“Wishing these families peace and comfort as they mourn the loss of their loved ones,” said Health Director, Kathy McGaha. McGaha continued, “Macon County residents can help protect themselves and others in our community by receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. Macon County Public Health has appointments available for the lifesaving vaccine for everyone who is 12 years old and older. The more individuals who get this vaccine, the more likely that we will stop seeing COVID-19 deaths.”

Older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19; however, anyone of any age can become infected with this illness. Therefore, we ask that community members strictly follow the governor’s recommendations and continue to practice social distancing, as well as safe hygiene measures such as hand washing and frequently cleaning touched objects and surfaces. Everyone who is eligible is encouraged to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, a safe and effective prevention tool.

If you believe that you may have COVID-19, please call the Health Department at 828-349-2081 to schedule an appointment for a test. To register and schedule an appointment to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, please call 828-349-2081.

August 23, 2021 - COVID-19 Boosters Available for Immunocompromised

Macon County Public Health will begin COVID-19 booster vaccinations for immunocompromised individuals on Thursday, August 26, 2021. Other dates for these boosters include September 2, September 9 and September 16.

These boosters are only for immunocompromised people who have completed two (2) doses of Moderna or Pfizer vaccines at least twenty-eight (28) days prior to the booster. Currently, there is not an approved booster vaccine for Johnson and Johnson. If you received Pfizer for your first two (2) doses, you should receive Pfizer for the booster dose and the same applies for Moderna.

Individuals requesting the booster vaccinations will be asked to sign an attestation stating the following health conditions apply:
· Receiving active cancer treatment
· Received an organ transplant and are taking medications to suppress their immune system
· Received a stem cell transplant within the last two (2) years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
· Moderate to severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome or Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
· Advanced or untreated HIV infection
· Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress immune system

Registered individuals MUST bring their immunization cards with them to receive the booster vaccination. For more information or to register for a COVID-19 booster, please call Macon County Public Health at (828) 349-2081.

If you believe that you may have COVID-19, please call the Health Department at 828-349-2081 to schedule an appointment for a test.

August 16, 2021 - Macon County Schools to Require Face Coverings

Macon County Board of Education has voted to require face coverings for students and staff. This requirement is currently in effect.

Face coverings are required inside school facilities and school transportation. Face coverings will not be required outside, or during vigorous physical activity. The face coverings mandate will be re-evaluated weekly.

MACON COUNTY GOVERNMENT

June 23, 2021 - Effective immediately the State of Emergency proclamation issued by Macon County in March of 2020 due to the coronavirus COVID719 pandemic is now terminated. The state is experiencing a decrease in the number of daily COVID-19 diagnoses and vaccines are readily available to the majority of the population.

The public is encouraged to follow health and safety guidelines and remain vigilant as we proceed through the summer months and enter the fall of 2021 to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Everyone who is eligible is encouraged to receive the COVID-19 vaccine which is a safe and effective prevention tool.

PROCLAMATION TERMINATING STATE OF EMERGENCY

WHEREAS, as a result of the coronavirus COVID-19 global pandemic, on March 17, 2020, a State of Emergency Proclamation was issued by Jim Tate, Chairman of the Macon County Commissioners; and

WHEREAS, over recent months in North Carolina, due to the measures taken by Macon County, other governmental agencies, civic organizations, volunteers, and the resilience and persistence of the residents of Macon County, the County is experiencing substantially lower COVID-19 related emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and daily diagnoses;

WHEREAS, COVID-19 vaccines are readily available to all residents; and

WHEREAS, The Governor of North Carolina by Executive Order 215 dated May 14, 2021, lifted many COVID-19 Restrictions to Reflect the New Public Health Recommendations; and

WHEREAS, pursuant N.C. Gen Stat. §166A-19.22(b}(3)c and §166A-19.22(c), the County is authorized to lift the State of Emergency previously declared.

NOW, THEREFORE, pursuant to the specific authority provided to the Chairman of the County Board of Commissioners by N.C. Gen Stat. §166A-19.22(b)(3)(c) and §166A-19.22(c), I hereby proclaim that the Covid-19 State of Emergency previously declared on March 17, 2020, for Macon County, North Carolina is no longer applicable and the same is hereby terminated.

This proclamation shall become effective immediately. Proclaimed this the 23rd day of June, 2021.

Jim Tate, Chairman Macon County Board of County Commissioners
Derek Roland, Macon County Manager and Clerk to the Board

MACON COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH VACCINATION UPDATES

Macon County Public Health has now opened COVID-19 vaccines to all who want them the age of 18 or older. Call 828-524-1500 to schedule an appointment.

MCPH Call Center Update - June 14, 2021 - Macon County to Close Vaccine Call Center, Calls to Go to Health Department

On June 18th, Macon County will be closing the COVID Call Center. The Macon County COVID Call Center opened January 16th to handle the high volume of calls in response to the launch of public vaccination efforts for COVID-19.

With the closing of the call center, members of the public who wish to receive the COVID-19 vaccine or need tested for COVID-19 are encouraged to call the Macon County Health Department directly at 828-349-2081, where they can then schedule an appointment for either testing or vaccination.

Kathy McGaha, Macon County Health Director, said of the closing, “We are so thankful for the xommunity members who stepped up to help our community and make the vaccine call center possible. This is not the end of our push to have Macon County residents vaccinated against this deadly virus, but we are beginning to incorporate our COVID-19 response with the important work we do every day.”

With generous support from Drake Enterprises, Macon County was able to launch a dedicated call center that could handle the demand for lifesaving vaccines. The call center was also able to hire temporary positions to staff the call center with funds made available by the Macon County Board of Commissioners, in addition to realignment of existing Macon County employees, and Macon County citizens who volunteered their time to help their community.

Integral to the opening of the vaccine call center was County Manager, Derek Roland. Mr. Roland was able to mobilize various county agencies, to assure the success of the call center. “The success we had at the call center would not have been possible without Mr. Phil Drake and his willingness to donate his facility, staff and equipment. In addition, the hard work and dedication of Sheriff Robert Holland, Tammy Keezer and all those employees and volunteers at the call center, whether it be disseminating information or registering individuals for vaccines, directly resulted in Macon County having one of the highest per capita vaccination rates in the state. As a Macon County citizen, I will never be able to thank these individuals enough for the excellent job they have done. As Macon County Manager, it is an honor to work alongside these individuals each and every day.”

The last day the Vaccine Call Center will be active will be Friday, June 18th, 2021 at 4:00pm. Those who wish to schedule an appointment after that time are asked to call Macon County Public Health at 828-349-2081. The Health Department is open Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 5:00pm

MCPH Vaccine Update - May 5, 2021

Macon County Public Health Will Being Pre-Registering Children Age 12 to 15 for the COVID-19 Vaccination

With the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccine advisory panel set to authorize the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use in those aged 12 to 15, Macon County’s Vaccine Call Center will begin to pre-register children, should their parents wish for them to be vaccinated once the vaccine has been approved. No Pfizer clinics are currently planned, though the public and those who pre-register will be notified once appointments become available for the Pfizer vaccine with Macon County Public Health.

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is approved under a FDA Emergency Use Authorization, and has been shown to be safe and effective at preventing severe illness from COVID-19, and vaccine clinical trials for the age 12 to 15 group had no symptomatic infections after being fully vaccinated. Side effects in this age group were similar to that of the age 16 to 25 group which included fever, pain at the injection site, and cold like symptoms lasting no longer than 72 hours after the injection.

Vaccinating children is key to increasing immunity within our community, and allowing students to return to a normal school life. Once fully-vaccinated, students will be able to stay in in-person classroom settings regardless of exposure, and those with no symptoms will be allowed to attend classes.

Parents that want their child to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, must call Macon County’s Vaccine Call Center at 828-524-1500 to pre-register. Any adult who wishes to receive the vaccine, may also call the Vaccine Call Center to register and schedule an appointment. The Macon County Vaccine Call Center is open Monday – Friday, from 8:00am to 5:00pm.

Macon County Public Health Vaccination Registration Updates

Macon County Public Health is vaccinating all individuals who are 18 years of age or older, regardless of health status or employment. Macon County Public Health has worked through a majority of the existing waitlist, including those who previously qualified for their vaccine. Appointments are available to all who qualify and want the vaccine. Individuals that want to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, must call Macon County’s Vaccine Call Center at 828-524-1500 to register and schedule an appointment. The Macon County Vaccine Call Center is open Monday – Friday, from 8:00am to 5:00pm.