The Town of Hillsborough is working closely with local health officials to receive the latest information about COVID-19 (coronavirus). Listed below are key reminders and local resources.
Orange County has a phone number and email for questions regarding the virus. See the Orange County Health Department section below for additional ways to receive information, including signing up for daily text updates.
N.C. Department of Health and Human Services maintains a map with the current count of COVID-19 cases by county: covid19.ncdhhs.gov/dashboard. For more information, please visit the local, state and national health experts listed below.
How to protect yourself
The state has mandated use of face coverings in many situations. The requirement applies:
- While indoors other than in a private home.
- While in a public transportation vehicle.
- While outdoors and unable to maintain a 6-foot physical distance from others.
Face coverings are not required:
- For those who cannot wear a face covering due to a medical or behavioral condition or disability.
- For children under 5 years old.
- For children whose parents or guardians are unable to place the face covering properly.
- While actively eating or drinking.
- While strenuously exercising.
- When speaking to a hearing-impaired person who needs to lip-read.
- While giving a speech for a broadcast or for an audience.
- When working at home, in a personal vehicle or in a personal office.
- If wearing a face covering would create a workplace safety issue.
- If wearing a face covering would impede visibility required to safely operate a vehicle or equipment.
- Temporarily, while securing government services or medical services, or for identification purposes.
In addition to wearing face coverings, citizens should continue to:
- Wash hands thoroughly and often for at least 20 seconds with soap and water.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with tissue or the inside of your elbow. Throw away the tissue after one use, and wash hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily.
- Avoid close contact with people.
Remember the three Ws:
- WEAR a face covering.
- WAIT 6 feet apart. Avoid close contact.
- WASH hands often or use hand sanitizer.
For more information, see the CDC website.
The Orange County Health Department is now offering regular testing events in Hillsborough and elsewhere in the county.
- Every Wednesday ― 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the R-7 Parking Lot, 725 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. in Chapel Hill.
- First Friday of each month ― 1 to 5 p.m. in the parking lot directly in front of the Whitted Human Services Center, 300 W. Tryon St. in Hillsborough (starting Oct. 2).
- Third Saturday of each month ― 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Lattisville Grove Missionary Baptist Church, 1701 Jimmy Ed Road in Hurdle Mills (starting Sept. 19).
- Fourth Saturday of each month ― noon to 4 p.m. at St. Thomas More Catholic Church, 940 Carmichael St. in Chapel Hill (starting Sept. 26).
Testing will be drive through or walk up. Anyone can receive a test regardless of whether they are showing symptoms or are a close contact of someone positive for the virus. Registration is on site, and the nasal swab tests are billed to insurance or provided free to those without insurance.
The county is partnering with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to offer weekly evaluative testing to university employees and on- and off-campus students at the Wednesday events in Chapel Hill.
For up-to-date testing information, see the county’s COVID-19 Testing page.
Gov. Roy Cooper has issued a series of statewide orders restricting certain activities to slow the spread of COVID-19. Orange County also has additional restrictions in its emergency declaration. See the COVID-19 Restrictions page on this website for more information.
Town services affected by COVID-19
The town is maintaining a list of town services affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and measures we are taking to slow the outbreak. Please check the page often for updates in changes to our services. Essential services are continuing, such as police protection, solid waste collection, and water and sewer service.
Preparing buildings and facilities for reopening
Buildings that are underutilized or shutdown for more than a few days should take precautions before reopening. Water system flushing information is provided now for buildings operating at lower capacity; for businesses choosing to restart some services as allowed under state orders; and in preparation for when local and state restrictions are further eased.
See the Business Resources section on this page for a comprehensive guide on reopening and for state guidance on reopening. Also see the COVID-19 Restrictions page on this website for additional guidance on reopening.
Flushing building water systems and devices
Water systems and devices in underutilized or unoccupied buildings should be flushed to ensure stale water is removed and fresh water with disinfectant is available. This reestablishes water quality and prevents waterborne illness. It includes all water-using appliances, like ice machines and dishwashers, and all water treatment devices, such as filters and water softeners. See the documents below. For additional information, contact the Hillsborough Water Treatment Plant at 919-732-3621.
During these challenging times, many of us are needing help or wanting to help. Orange County maintains a listing of resources available to the community on its COVID-19 Community Resources page. Below are some ways to help your community. Please remember that adhering to social distancing guidelines is the most important way you can support our community. See information regarding social distancing in the resources section on this page and on the COVID-19 Restrictions page.
Orange County has expanded hours for people in housing crisis to talk with someone to get help. People in housing crisis can call the Housing Helpline at 919-245-2655 to talk with someone:
- Noon-4 p.m. Monday-Friday
- Midnight-6 a.m. Sunday-Thursday
The county is routinely updating an online document with services available for people experiencing housing crises during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Local businesses support
The pandemic is causing great financial hardship to our local businesses. It is important to support them throughout this period because they are the backbone of our economic security.
The Hillsborough/Orange County Chamber of Commerce and the Wooden Nickel Public House are hosting tip jar campaigns to benefit local workers. For more information, see the news release.
Orange County is seeking volunteers to help in the response to COVID-19. In addition, it is hosting a list of community organizations that are coordinating events or fundraisers to benefit the community. See the county's Community Resources page related to COVID-19 for more information and to complete a volunteer form.
Water Assistance Program
The Water Assistance Program offers assistance with paying Hillsborough water and sewer bills and is funded entirely through donations from utility customers. The program is administered through a partnership with Orange Congregations in Mission, a local nonprofit organization. During this time, donations can be made using the online form.
For more information on the program, see the Water Assistance Program page.
Orange County and the towns and chambers of commerce within the county are working together to help mitigate the financial hardship small businesses are experiencing due to the COVID-19 outbreak and to help provide guidance on employment and reopening. The group is providing guidance and funding options to businesses. See the group's COVID-19 Resource Hub.
For information on specific restrictions for restaurants, see the COVID-19 Restrictions webpage.
Please check the following resources for businesses:
- Hillsborough/Orange County Chamber of Commerce: COVID-19 Business Resources.
- The Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina: North Carolina Business Reopening Resources ― COVID-19
Small Business Administration assistance
Small business owners in North Carolina can seek assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration due to COVID-19. See the agency's Coronavirus Relief Options page for more information.
A comprehensive guide is now available to provide businesses with the best known guidance to ensure consumer confidence and to promote community health during the pandemic. It includes recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, and local public and environmental health professionals.
The guide was drafted by the Chatham County Economic Development Corporation in partnership with other entities in Chatham and Orange counties, including the Town of Hillsborough. It is in the form of a Google document to allow updates as new information is made available. The guide is available at www.reopeninghelp.com.
Additional business guidance and resources are available in the documents below and on the state's COVID-19 Guidance webpage.
The Orange County Long-Term Recovery Group is creating a plan for recovery from COVID-19 to help strengthen the community for all people. A survey was conducted to identify community values that will help shape the county’s path forward. The survey results will be used to create a disaster recovery plan to increase the resilience of the community.
Community resilience is a community’s ability to withstand and recover from disruptions like natural disasters, accidents or attacks through individual and community preparedness. The survey is part of a coordinated, multi-jurisdictional effort to build a stronger, more resilient community.
Below are sources for local news:
Below are resources made available by the town and Orange County Health Department. Please share.
Orange County Health Department
The Orange County Health Department is our local source for health-related information.
Orange County has a voicemail message system for questions about COVID-19 or its impacts on Orange County services. Call 919-245-6111 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. Spanish and other languages are available.
Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- See the department's COVID-19 web section (English).
- See the department's COVID-19 web section (Spanish).
- Sign up for daily text updates: Text 888-777 and put OCNCHEALTH in the message for English or OCNCSALUD for Spanish. Carrier message or data rates may apply.
- Sign up for the department's COVID-19 e-newsletter: www.orangecountync.gov/list.aspx
- Follow the department on Facebook: @orangecountyhealthdepartment
- Follow the department on Twitter: @OrangeHealthNC
- See the department's YouTube channel: OCHDNC
N.C. Department of Health and Human Services
The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services is our state authority when it comes to health-related concerns.
Text COVIDNC to 898211 to receive updates via text message.
For general, non-urgent questions about coronavirus, contact the department:
- By email: email@example.com.
- By phone: 1-866-462-3821 or 211 (available at all hours).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is the national authority for health-related concerns.