The Wilkes County Health Department reported the COVID-19-related deaths of three Wilkes residents Monday, bringing the county’s pandemic mortality total to 41.

Two of the three, one in his/her 70s and one in his/her 60s, died Monday. The other person, in his/her 80s, died Saturday.

All three died from complications associated with the virus in Wilkes County but not all at Wilkes Medical Center, said Wilkes Health Department Director Rachel Willard. The youngest and oldest of the three had underlying health conditions, she said.

To protect the privacy of families of COVID-19 patients, the health department doesn’t tell gender or release any additional information about the patients.

“This unfortunate situation is a reminder that we should continue to be vigilant and not let our guard down, especially as we head into flu season. Please practice the 3 Ws (wait, wash, and wear) when outside your home,” said Willard.

Wilkes had more COVID-19-related deaths than any adjoining county as of Monday. Totals for the adjoining counties then were Iredell, 34; Surry, 33; Caldwell, 19; Alexander, 10; Yadkin, nine; Ashe, three; and Alleghany, one.

By Monday, 1,887 Wilkes residents had been confirmed as having COVID-19 since the pandemic began in March. The health department reported that Wilkes had 139 active COVID-19 cases, including four hospitalized, by then.

The 1,887 cases included 469 in the two weeks ending Monday. Willard said the majority of those 469 cases resulted from community spread.

Statewide, the seven-day average of new cases per day surged late last week after the state had its three highest new case counts on consecutive days. It fell from a record high 2,370 new cases on Sunday to 2,327 on Monday.

Among Wilkes County’s 1,887 total cases, 52% were male and 48% female. Thirty-eight% of them were ages 25-49, 22% ages 50-64, 11% ages 18-24, 11% infant to 17, 10% ages 65-74 and 9% 75 and older.

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