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COVID-19 cases appear to be on the rise among uninsured in Charlotte

The executive director of Care Ring said the number of cases have doubled in the last few weeks and like other health experts in the area.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A Charlotte non-profit clinic that helps care for the uninsured said they're seeing more and more COVID positive patients each day, with many of them essential workers.

The executive director of Care Ring said the number of cases have doubled in the last few weeks and like other health experts in the area. He said he's worried it will only get worse. 

“It was very scary,” said 59-year-old Rochell McGee, a Care Ring patient who is just now feeling better after fighting COVID 19 for almost a month.

“I’ve been through a nightmare, the COVID-19 is like living in an unreal world.”

McGee, a mother of 6, got help at Care ring- a non-profit clinic that cares for people in Charlotte who don’t have insurance and struggle to get access to the care they need.

Executive Director Don Jonas said, “We are seeing more people than we've ever seen in our history.”

And it’s only getting worse with each passing month

“Every day there's more and more,” said nurse practitioner Jenny Lutz. 

Jonas adds, “We have seen dramatic increases in the number of people were seeing who are COVID 19 positive – particularly in the Latino population.”

Lutz said that’s in part because many of their patients are essential workers who can’t afford to miss a day at work.

“We have a lot of construction, a lot of people who work in hotels doing housekeeping ask a lot of our patients are in the service industry so we see a lot of hairstylists.”

Of the 50 patients, they’ve treated so far, most have recovered. One patient has died.

Lutz said it brings the reality of what’s going on home for her and her friends and family

“People I know, I tell them hey guys, this is real- effecting people in our city, we need to be careful we need to wear masks, social distance we need to take this seriously,” Lutz said. 

McGee has the same advice. She is finally feeling better and planning to head back to work next week and she’s grateful the team at Care Ring got her though COVID.

“She kept reassuring me – you’re gonna be fine, we're gonna guide you through this and they did.”

Care Ring is a Non-profit they typically ask for a small fee for medical care but they stopped that at the beginning of the pandemic – they say many of the patients they’re seeing are now out of work and out of food for their families.


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