Wake County health officials release timeline for COVID-19 patients’ movements


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Wake County health officials have released more information pertaining to the five COVID-19 patients who tested presumptively positive on March 9.

All traveled to Boston in late February to attend a conference for Biogen. There have been several COVID-19 cases from around the country tied to the conference, the NCDHHS said.

All five people are being isolated in their homes.


Feb. 29
One individual went to vote early in the Primary Election at Millbrook Exchange Community Center in Raleigh. Wake County Public Health has the names of the elections officials and are working with them to further assess the risk of exposure at this location. 

March 2 – 5
Multiple people went to work at the Biogen offices in the Research Triangle Park while showing symptoms. Our public health staff are working with the company to assess the risk of exposure at their facility.

March 2 – 6
Multiple traveled between Raleigh-Durham International Airport and Boston, and Boston and RDU. If you were on a flight and determined to be at risk, a public health official will contact you directly.

March 4
One person ate at Zest Café & Home Art on 8831 Six Forks Road in Raleigh.

“Our public health team has diligently created a timeline for each affected person, so we know where they went and when,” said Chris Kippes, the Wake County Public Health Division director. “We’re actively using that information to determine who may have come in close contact with the affected individuals and reaching out to them now, so we can evaluate their risk of exposure.”

Gov. Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency Tuesday due to the outbreak.

The Wake County Department of Health said the risk of contracting COVID-19 remains low but the following steps can be performed to protect yourself from COVID-19 and any other flu-like illness:

  • Wash your hands.
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Stay away from sick people.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces using regular household cleaning spray or wipes.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Stay home if you’re sick and don’t send sick children to school or childcare.

Taking the proper precautions can potentially mitigate the impact of the virus, Dr. Many Cohen, Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, said.

“This is a critical moment in the growing outbreak of COVID-19 here in North Carolina when such measures can potentially impact the spread of the disease,” she said.

In addition to steps like washing your hands and not touching your face, Cohen and Cooper both said those in high-risk populations should take additional measures.

“People at high risk, above age 65 or with underlying health conditions, should avoid large groups of people as much as possible,” said Cohen. “Facilities housing vulnerable populations should limit visitors.”

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