North Carolina's Strategy to Combat COVID-19

Since the start of the pandemic, North Carolina took early and aggressive action to slow the spread of the virus, manage shortages of testing and PPE supplies, develop hospital surge plans, and build testing and contact tracing capabilities. Our collective actions prevented our health care systems from being overwhelmed and provided valuable time to build our state’s capacity to respond to the crisis. Still, the risk of COVID-19 remains as North Carolinians are leaving their homes.

We have important goals in the fight against COVID-19.

  • Protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our neighbors from getting seriously ill
  • Restore our economy and get North Carolinians back to work safely
  • Get our children back to school so they can learn, play, and thrive
  • Address disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on historically marginalized populations

How will we know if our efforts are working?

We are closely monitoring key COVID-19 trends and capacity metrics to determine how we can safely continue to ease restrictions in the future:

  • COVID-like syndromic cases
  • Cases
  • Positive tests as a percentage of total tests
  • Hospitalizations
  • Testing
  • Contact tracing
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Where do we go from here?

To achieve our goals, we need every North Carolinian to play their part to protect their health and the health of their loved ones and neighbors. Each of our actions contribute to our ability to further ease restrictions and get North Carolinians back to work and school gradually and safely, while also slowing the spread of COVID-19.
  What the State is Doing What You Can Do
Prevention: Slow the Spread
  • Phased reopening of sectors/ activities to minimize spread of COVID-19
  • Require face coverings that cover the nose and mouth (indoors and outdoors) when physical distancing of 6 feet is not possible
  • Promote the 3Ws (Wear, Wait, Wash)
  • Practice the 3Ws (wear a cloth covering over the nose and mouth, wait 6 feet, wash your hands) and encourage friends and family do the same
  • Share social media posts, videos, flyers and more to encourage people to practice the 3Ws and protect themselves, their neighbors and their loved ones.  
  • Employers should follow NCDHHS guidance for specific settings
Testing and Tracing: Know Who Has COVID-19 and Who Has Been Exposed
  • Build a statewide testing & contact tracing infrastructure
  • Surge resources in hardest hit communities and populations
Isolation and Quarantine: Support People to Stay Home
  • Ensure access to non-congregate shelters for people who need to isolate
  • Enact policies to enable people to miss work and stay at home, leverage NCCARE360 to connect to supports
  • Stay home when you can, especially when sick
  • Support employees to stay home when sick to minimize the spread of COVID-19