Orange County Health Department: Operation Changes
In order to protect everyone’s health during the COVID-19 pandemic, Orange County Health Department is no longer accepting walk-in appointments. However, we are offering telehealth appointments to meet your immediate medical needs. If you need medical attention please call 919-245-2400 to schedule a telehealth appointment. Please do not walk into the clinic to request an appointment. If you are having a medical emergency, as always, call 911.
Stay at Home
Orange County's Stay at Home order went into effect on March 27, at 6pm. Governor Cooper issued a statewide Stay at Home order, which began on March 30 at 6pm and ends on April 29.
For more information regarding the Orange County order, click here.
Information regarding the state order can be found at this link.
Receive COVID-19 Updates Through Text
Orange County residents can receive COVID-19 updates by text message. If interested, text OCNCHEALTH to 888-777. For Spanish, text OCNCSALUD to 888-777.
Orange County Call Center
*Due to low call volume, the Call Center will be in operation from Monday-Friday only.
Myths Vs. Facts: Week of March 30, 2020
Myth: You can protect yourself from COVID-19 by swallowing or gargling with bleach, taking acetic acid or steroids, or using essential oils, salt water, ethanol or other substances. Fact: None of these recommendations protects you from getting COVID-19, and some of these practices may be dangerous. The best ways to protect yourself from this coronavirus (and other viruses) include:
Washing your hands frequently and thoroughly, using soap and hot water.
Avoiding close contact with people who are sick, sneezing or coughing.
In addition, you can avoid spreading your own germs by coughing into the crook of your elbow and staying home when you are sick.
Myth: A face mask will protect you from COVID-19. Fact: Certain models of professional, tight-fitting respirators (such as the N95) can protect health care workers as they care for infected patients. The medical professionals will be “fit tested” prior to use.
For the general public without respiratory illness, wearing lightweight disposable surgical masks is not recommended. Because they don’t fit tightly, they may allow tiny infected droplets to get into the nose, mouth or eyes. Also, people with the virus on their hands who touch their face under a mask might become infected.
People with a respiratory illness can wear these masks to lessen their chance of infecting others. Bear in mind that stocking up on masks makes fewer available for sick patients and health care workers who need them.
Myth: COVID-19 is only dangerous for people 65 or older. Fact: Approximately 12% of all COVID-19 cases are serious enough to require hospitalization. Many people are surprised to learn 20% of those hospitalizations were among patients 20-44 years old. Additionally, of patients aged 20 – 44 who get COVID-19, between 14 and 21% get sick enough to require hospitalization.
Myth: I need to stockpile as many groceries and supplies as I can. Fact: Please only buy what your family needs for a week. It is important to remember that many families may be unable to buy a supply of food and water for weeks in advance. Consumer demand has recently been exceptionally high – especially for grocery, household cleaning, and some healthcare products. Freight flows are not disrupted, but stores need time to restock.
North Carolina COVID-19 Cases:
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) reports 1,498 COVID-19 cases, 157 hospitalizations and 8 deaths as of March 31, 2020. For more information regarding live updates (NCDHHS updates the site every morning at 11 a.m.), please visit the NCDHHS website.
There are currently 34 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Orange County.
Orange County will not be sharing any patient demographics about positive COVID-19 cases. Information that identifies a person who has or may have COVID-19 is protected by NC’s communicable disease confidentiality law, G.S. 130A-143. When the information is maintained by a local health department, it is protected by HIPAA as well. The address alone is sufficient to make the information individually identifiable, even without the name. Therefore, the information must be managed in a way that complies with these laws. We will not ever share race, age, sex or zip code.
Social distancing is extremely important to limit the spread of COVID-19. Included below are infographics in English, Spanish and Chinese that give tips on social distancing. Orange County encourages residents to practice social distancing along with other steps, such as proper hand washing, to combat the spread.
Spanish, Chinese, Kinyarwanda, Chinese and Karen versions of the graphics below are available here.
World Health Organization 'Social Distancing Saves Lives' video
Avoid COVID-19 Scams
Read more about how to protect yourself from coronavirus scams here. Spanish translation is available here.
NC 2-1-1 is an information and referral service provided by United Way of North Carolina. Accessible via an easy-to-remember, three-digit number, families and individuals can call to obtain free and confidential information on health and human services and resources within their community.
2-1-1 is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Dialing 2-1-1 is free, confidential, and available in most languages.
Today, Apple Inc. – in partnership with the White House Coronavirus Task Force and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – released an app and website that guides Americans through a series of questions about their health and exposure to determine if they should seek care for COVID-19 symptoms. The tool provides CDC recommendations on next steps including guidance on social distancing and self-isolating, how to closely monitor symptoms, recommendations on testing, and when to contact a medical provider.
This launch is a direct response to President Trump’s call for an all-of-America approach and will help Americans heed CDC guidelines and self-isolate to limit COVID-19 transmission.