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Posted on: August 11, 2023

As new school year begins, COVID-19 protocols remain crucial

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – While the Federal Public Health Emergency declaration for COVID-19 ended in May, continuing to practice healthy habits in defense of COVID and other respiratory illness remains critical as the 2023-24 school year gets set to begin. 

“Based on the data we received earlier in the week from North Carolina Health and Human Services , there has been an uptick in diagnosed COVID cases in our area, which is something we are keeping an eye on as kids are starting to head back to school,” said New Hanover County Health Director Jon Campbell, “While COVID is a concern, there are a number of other respiratory illnesses that generally impact students as transmission increases due to close proximity indoors. The best practice is to stay home if you’re sick, take a test to be sure and wash your hand thoroughly and often to prevent illness.” 

Washing hands for 20 seconds or longer with warm, soapy water, including scrubbing between your fingers and fingernails is the first step in preventing illness for yourself. Additionally, staying home when you are sick helps limit the spread of viruses to others. 

To help in the fight against COVID, free take home test kits are available at the Health and Human Services Clinic at 1650 Greenfield Street during normal business hours. 

The latest COVID-19 vaccines and free at-home COVID-19 tests are available on a walk-in basis at the Health and Human Services Clinic during the following days and times:  

  • Mondays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.  
  • Tuesdays from 8 a.m.-6 p.m.
  • Wednesday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.  
  • Thursdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.  
  •  Fridays from 8 am-5 p.m.

For more information on COVID-19 or services offered at the Health and Human Services Clinic, visit     

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