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A Check-In With Surrounding Counties In The 'Red' For Critical Coronavirus Spread

gaston county schools.jpg
Erin Keever
Sign at Belmont Middle School in Gaston County

People just aren’t listening to health experts. Many still refuse to wear masks or – worse – gather with people outside their immediate family in social settings where distancing isn’t possible.

That is why COVID-19 cases are exploding across the country. It’s why the return to normal has slowed. It’s why cases in North Carolina have reached the point where hospitals are worried that, by January, the number of cases will exceed their capacity.

About half the counties in North Carolina fall into the red – or highest infection category. Mecklenburg County, for the moment, is orange.

We hear from health professionals in counties surrounding Mecklenburg – about their efforts to contain the spread.


Steve Eaton, public health director, Gaston County Department of Health & Human Services

Erin Shoe, deputy health director, Cabarrus Health Alliance

Leeanne Whisnant, health and human services director, Alexander County

Dr. Michael Kacka, chief medical officer for the COVID-19 response at South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC)

Erin Keever is Senior Producer of WFAE's Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins. She has been with the show since joining the station in 2006. She's a native Charlottean.