Health Officials Say 213 COVID-19 Cases, 12 Deaths Connected To United House Of Prayer Events In Charlotte

The Latest (11/19/20):

Public Health officials say they have identified 213 cases of COVID-19 among attendees and close contacts and 12 deaths in connection to the events that took place from October 4th-October 11th at the United House of Prayer For All People.

Among those are 203 Mecklenburg County residents, 4 Iredell County residents, 5 Gaston County resident, and 1 Cabarrus County resident. At least 12 cases were hospitalized due to their infection. There have been 12 deaths — 10 Mecklenburg County residents and 2 Gaston County resident. Public Health has attempted to contact at least 294 close contacts of confirmed cases – all of which have completed monitoring connected with this exposure.

The Latest (11/10/20):

Public health officials say they have identified 208 cases of COVID-19 and nine deaths in connection to the events that took place from October 4th-October 11th at the United House of Prayer For All People.

Among those are 199 Mecklenburg County residents, 4 Iredell County residents, 4 Gaston County resident, and 1 Cabarrus County resident. At least 11 cases were hospitalized due to their infection. There have been 9 deaths — 8 Mecklenburg County residents and 1 Gaston County resident – and 1 additional death is under investigation. Public Health has attempted to contact at least 294 close contacts of confirmed cases.

No additional cases were reported among residents or staff at Madison Saint Paradise Senior Living.

Update (Posted October 30, 2020):

Public health officials say they have identified 181 cases of COVID-19 and six deaths in connection to the events that took place from October 4th-October 11th at the United House of Prayer For All People.

Among those are 172 Mecklenburg County residents, 4 Iredell County residents, 4 Gaston County resident, and 1 Cabarrus County resident. At least 10 cases were hospitalized due to their infection. There have been 6 deaths — 5 Mecklenburg County residents and 1 Gaston County resident. Public Health has attempted to contact at least 262 close contacts of confirmed cases.

Officials say no additional cases were reported among residents or staff at Madison Saint Paradise Senior Living. There is only one case connected to this event and the cluster at White Oak Manor. The staff person has not worked since attending the event, according to a news release.

Update (Posted October 26, 2020):

Public health officials say they have identified 143 cases of COVID-19 connected to the events that took place from October 4th-October 11th at the United House of Prayer For All People.  Among those are 139 Mecklenburg County residents, four Iredell County residents, one Gaston County resident, and one Cabarrus County resident, according to a news release.

At least seven people were hospitalized due to their infection and five people have died, according to the Mecklenburg County Health Department.  Officials say four of the deaths were Mecklenburg County residents and one was a Gaston County resident.

Officials say the cluster at Madison Saints Paradise South Senior Living has increased to 19 confirmed cases – 16 residents and three staff.  Public Health has attempted to contact at least 192 close contacts of confirmed cases, according to a news release.

Public Health advises anyone who attended events at the church Oct. 4 – Oct. 11 or who has been in contact with someone who attended events at the church on the dates mentioned above get tested for COVID-19.  If you have COVID-19 like symptoms, please avoid close contact with anyone.

Public Health has notified several local health departments in California, District of Columbia, Georgia, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, and South Carolina to monitor for potential cases connected to these events based on information obtained during case investigations.

Update (Posted October 24, 2020):

Gibbie Harris, Public Health Director, announced an Abatement of Imminent Hazard Order, immediately closing all House Of Prayer in-person gatherings starting at 10 a.m. on October 24th, according to a news release.

Health officials say the church has not been cooperative after an outbreak of coronavirus at their facility associated with convocation events held on October 4th through October 11th.

Harris says as of today there are 121 cases connected to the event held at the United House of Prayer for All People including;

  • 2 cases in Iredell County.
  • 1 case in Cabarrus County.
  • 3 deaths.
  • 7 hospitalizations (some on ventilators).
  • 14 cases connected to Madison Saints Paradise South Senior Living.
  • 2 cases connected to White Oak Manor senior living.

Harris says all in-person gathering at the church will be canceled until the order is lifted, until November 6th at the least, and the church must let all members know, disinfect the facility, and post a public notice.

Harris says this is the third time in her career she has had to use this authority.

“We have taken this action out of an abundance of caution to prevent the COVID-19 virus from further spreading in our community,” said Public Health Director Gibbie Harris. “This type of order is rare, but sometimes necessary. It prevents the church from opening or allowing any further gathering, making sure we stop this outbreak from going any further.”

Watch the full news conference here:

Update (Posted October 23, 2020):

According to Mecklenburg County Health officials, more than 100 people who attended a convocation event at a Charlotte church two weeks ago have tested positive for COVID-19.

The Friday announcement from health officials said that the COVID cases related to the event that was held at the United House of Prayer For All People, located on Beatties Ford Road continue to climb. The new number of cases are now at 99 cases in Mecklenburg  County along with two cases now in Iredell County.

This brings the total COVID-19 case count liked to the event at 101. This news comes after a Thursday announcement of an additional death linked to the convocation events bringing the total to three deaths.

About a hundred people were tested at Beatties Ford health department yesterday, but there is no way to know how many related to church event, health officials say.

Drive-thru testing continues today at the Mecklenburg County Health Department through 5 p.m.

“I love them and I care about all of our people,” said Vilma Leake, County Commissioner for District 2.

Leake says she has been to the church countless times over the years.

I became very concerned about the parishioners. And then my concern about the total community and their involvement,” said Leake.

The church has been a staple in the community for decades and now the center of a super spreader event.

“You cannot hold church people responsible to some degree because people make decisions on their own,” said Leake.

The Latest (10/21/20):

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Health officials say the COVID-19 cluster associated with events held at United House of Prayer For All People has turned deadly with 68 positive cases of the virus and two deaths.

Update on COVID-19 Outbreak (10/21)

There are now 68 confirmed COVID-19 cases associated with convocation events at the United House of Prayer for All People, Among them, there have been 4 hospitalizations and 2 deaths. Details » https://meck.co/2ITal0VDeputy Health Director Dr. Raynard Washington provides an update.

Posted by Mecklenburg County Government on Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Original Story (10/20/20):

MECKLENBURG COUNTY, NC. — Fifty laboratory-confirmed COVID cases are associated with events at United House of Prayer For All People. The church held a week’s worth of convocation events earlier this month. The cases have upwards of 75 contacts that are in quarantine, says Dr. Raynard Washington with the health department. Five of the cases are in nursing homes.

“We are encouraging those who either participated in any of the events on Saturday or Sunday or anytime in the window October 4th through the 11th at that church to be tested for COVID,” says Dr. Washington.

Daily COVID cases doubled in the past week in Mecklenburg County. 177 cases per day on average. The percent positive increased to about 6%.

“It’s frustrating because we see a spike in cases but maybe not necessarily a spike in contacts. Which would indicate people are less willing to give us contacts,” says Autumn Watson.

Autumn Watson is the contact tracing lead for Mecklenburg County. She says the health department is struggling to get contact information to let people know they might be at risk for COVID and should get tested.

“One of my biggest fears is that people continue to not answer their phones or don’t call us back and then they just go about their regular everyday lives while continuing to spread COVID and not even know it.”

She says contact tracing is very effective in combating communicable diseases.

“The main thing that we want to get across is that we’re not trying to pry, we’re literally just trying to get the information out to those individuals so that they are aware that they are at high risk and they’ve been in contact.”