I got the first vaccine dose, then I had a Covid scare... now what?

Mar 29, 2021
Katelyn Freund

As coronavirus vaccines are becoming more widely available to the public, new questions are popping up. Like: Which vaccine is best for me? And: What if I test positive for COVID between vaccine doses? WHQR has answers. 

Governor Roy Cooper announced last week that North Carolina will make Group 4 vaccine eligibility a week sooner than originally planned. But technical issues continue to hamper coronavirus vaccine distribution across the country.

NHC Flickr Page

It's been close to three months since North Carolina rolled out its vaccination program, now being extended to the third of five groups. So how do those who have already received the shot feel about it?

David Woo / Flickr

North Carolina is moving to the next phase of Covid-19 vaccine distribution soon.  But Group 3 is going to get the shot in phases.  


North Carolina will get 5% more of the Covid-19 vaccine starting next week.  But there’s still not enough vaccine available, and it’s even worse for those in minority communities. 

NHCS YouTube Channel

At Tuesday night's New Hanover County School Board meeting, there was plenty of community support for returning pre-K through 5th-graders to school full time. Next week, the board will decide whether to do that.

Duke University

  New research is suggesting that even if there’s high spread of the coronavirus in the community, that doesn’t translate into increased cases in schools. But the findings rest upon each school’s commitment to masking, handwashing, and distancing.

NHC Flickr Page

  As more North Carolinians are becoming eligible for vaccination,  actually getting a vaccine appointment has become trickier. This has added uncertainty to an already uneven rollout. Local health officials have heard these frustrations and advise patience.

NHCS YouTube Channel

  At Tuesday night’s New Hanover County School Board meeting, the announcement came that school staff will be vaccinated in Phase 1B. There were also concerns from some community members about the impending elementary reopening.


  The New Hanover County School Board has approved reopening pre-k-5 schools for full in-personing learning on January 19th, pushing back an earlier opening date by a week. It’s been a difficult decision for members, especially the newest ones who had to make up their minds quickly.

At Tuesday afternoon's press conference, Governor Roy Cooper announced that the Covid-19 vaccine arrived in North Carolina on Monday. But he says the vaccines will not be available to the general public anytime soon and that coronavirus infection rates are continuing to rise. 

Ben Schachtman

New Hanover Regional Medical Center is getting closer to limiting less urgent procedures. In part, the decision depends on whether or not the hospital hits an average of 50 Covid-19 patients.

Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to rise at concerning levels across North Carolina.  For that reason, Governor Roy Cooper is extending restrictions on gatherings and tightening requirements on mask-wearing.  And as Pender County becomes one of 21 counties with substantial community spread, state officials hope local governments will follow Greensboro’s example. 

Wilmingon Health

The number of Covid-19 cases in New Hanover County continue to rise. WHQR talks with Wilmington Health's Dr. Paul Kamitsuka about what you need to know before celebrating the upcoming holidays.    


Covid-19 cases in North Carolina are still rising.  But state health officials say because of early precautions, the state is not seeing a huge spike nor are hospitals overloaded.  But state health officials are worried about the upcoming holidays.    

NHC Students, Teachers Readjust To In-Person Classes

Oct 19, 2020

New Hanover County Schools opened for in-person classes last week. WHQR checked-in with some school personnel to see how things went.

  At his Tuesday afternoon press conference, Governor Roy Cooper announced the easing of COVID-19 restrictions. WHQR reports Phase 2.5 of his safer-at-home policy will go into effect this Friday, September 4th at 5 P.M.   

WHQR files

Over the weekend, the University of North Carolina-Wilmington identified its third COVID cluster on campus. On Monday night, that number grew to four. As a graduate student, I was able to get a firsthand look at the university's testing process. 

Two Covid Clusters Arrive At UNCW

Aug 28, 2020
Adobe Stock

The University of North Carolina-Wilmington has identified two clusters of COVID-19 in campus dorms. 

It wasn't entirely unexpected.

  As the number of Covid-19 cases in North Carolina continues to stabilize, WHQR has details on the Governor’s new budget proposal.      

UNCW Twitter

Coronavirus clusters are popping up on college campuses across the nation. WHQR spoke with UNCW students about the risks of campus life. TV

  At his Wednesday, August 19th press conference, Governor Roy Cooper announced the metrics the state uses to determine the severity of the coronavirus are stable, and some are even declining. As WHQR reports, he also pledged $12 million dollars to expand Internet services across the state.

As college students return to campus for the fall semester, COVID cases in dorms are on the rise, and faculty and employees on UNC campuses are expressing fear for their safety. 

Ending Saturday, August 8th, this past week’s top stories include Hurricane Isaias blowing through the Cape Fear region and the on-going question of how to reopen schools safely durng a global pandemic. Take a listen below.

COVID-19 Updates & More

Jul 23, 2020

This page lists and/or directs to resources available to our community during the coronavirus outbreak. Resources will be updated regularly.

Click here to view WHQR's news coverage of the coronavirus. 

Vaccines and testing:

For many, the most pressing current concerns are getting tested and vaccinated. 

The best place to find information on when and where vaccines are available in New Hanover County is at the county's vaccine website, which you can find here.

Note: You can receive info about NHC, New Hanover Regional Medical Center (now under Novant), and Wilmington Health from the county's vaccine call line, or you can contact those providers directly.

  • NHC Public Health: Vaccinations can be scheduled by calling 910-798-6800 when appointments are available. Schedule online:
  • NHRMC: Vaccinations can be scheduled at or by calling (910) 662-2020 when appointments are available.
  • MedNorth: Visit or call 910-202-8617 for vaccine information.
  • Wilmington Health: Vaccinations can be scheduled at or by calling (910) 407-5115 when appointments are available.
  • Walgreens: Vaccinations can be scheduled online here for participating local Walgreen locations when appointments are available.
  • Harris Teeter: Vaccinations can be scheduled online here for participating Harris Teeter locations when appointments are available.

Similiar information is available from Brunswick County here. For Pender County here.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has an online index of testing sites -- Find My Testing Place - NCDHHS

Other important resources:

North Carolina's Community Resources Page

New Hanover County’s Resources & Assistance Page

Brunswick County’s Community Assistance Page

Pender County’s Community Resource Page

New Hanover Disaster Coalition

Check My Symptoms - NCDHHS

Community Care North Carolina Covid-19 Triage Plus - 1-877-490-6642


RETOOLNC, NC Department of Administration Grant

NC Department of Commerce Mortgage, Utility and Rent Relief Fund (MURR)

NC Department of Commerce's Job Retention Grant (JRG)

NCDHHS Guidance for Businesses and Opertions 

Count on Me Program

UNCW Swain Center Resources -- For Executive Education & Economic Development 

NCDHHS Resources for Businesses and Employers

Brunswick County's Resources for Businesses

Support from the NC Small Business and Technology Development Center (SBTDC)

Cape Fear Community College Small Business Center

Disaster Assistance Loan

NC COVID-19 Rapid Recovery for Small Businesses

The Wilmington Chamber of Commerce

  • With New Hanover County, the Chamber has set up a Business Emergency Operations Center. The dedicated number for this Center is 910-762-2611. The email is This service is for any business in the region in need of assistance.

Housing Support

  • NC Hope Program - For residents who are behind on rent or utilities due to Covid-19

Childcare Services


NC Courts Update


Brunswick County Schools' Online Educational Resources/Video Tutorials

New Hanover County Schools' Social Distance Learning 

Pender County Schools' ClassLink


NC Kids Digital Library


Food Services 

Text FOODNC to 877-877 to find free meal sites

Cape Fear Food Council 

New Hanover County Food Assistance Resource Guide

New Hanover County Senior Resource Center

Brunswick Senior Resources, Inc.

New Hanover County Schools

Brunswick County Schools 

Pender County Schools

Brigade Boys & Girls Club

Salvation Army of the Cape Fear

Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina

Brunswick Family Assistance

Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) - NCDHHS

Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program

Mental Health

Restaurants, Dine-out and Delivery:


  • Click here to find out the latest about WAVE's transportation routes.


  • To apply for unemployment insurance, visit the NC Department of Commerce’s website. There is specific information for filing due to COVID-19.
  • Financial assistance help through Help Hub, by calling 910-769-5357.


  • If you are a student or faculty member of UNCW and have questions about COVID-19, contact the Student Health Center at 910-962-3280 or 910-962-0587 or by email at
  • The Counseling Center's number is 910-962-3746.

Volunteer Services

Share Cape Fear

United Way of the Cape Fear Area

Recovered COVID-19 patients can choose to donate their plasma to the Red Cross



 Almost 4 out of 10 New Hanover County School teachers say they have personal issues that prevent them from working face-to-face with students. That’s according to a newly released survey by the school system. But as WHQR’s reports, New Hanover County has chosen to implement Governor Roy Cooper’s Plan B, which involves all staff returning in-person.   

Vince Winkel

At his Covid-19 press conference on Wednesday, June 24, Governor Roy Cooper announced his decision to extend Phase II restrictions and require mandatory masks in public places. Meanwhile, Wilmington has launched an initiative which allows businesses on some streets to move off the sidewalk and on to the street to serve customers during specific hours.

Downtown Restaurants Taking It To The Streets

Jun 25, 2020
Vince Winkel

The Downtown Alive initiative kicked off last night in Wilmington as sections of downtown were closed to traffic to allow restaurants and stores to expand on to sidewalks and streets.

At his Covid-19 press conference on Wednesday, June 24th, Governor Roy Cooper announced his decision to extend Phase II restrictions and require mandatory masks in public places.

Adobe Stock

In early April, WHQR spoke with a Wilmington native working as an ER nurse on the frontlines of the pandemic. We recently followed up with Michael—that's not his real name—to see how life in the ER has changed.