Health

Alaska experiences 2 deaths, over 800 COVID-19 instances and slight uptick in hospitalizations

By Anchorage Daily News

Updated: 13 hours in the past Published: 13 hours in the past

Alaska on Friday reported 839 instances of COVID-19 and two extra deaths tied to the virus, in response to state information.

By the tip of this week, Alaska’s each day COVID-19 case counts seemed to be barely leveling off from prior weeks of regular case will increase. However, case counts stay far above final winter’s peak, and on Friday, the variety of COVID-positive sufferers hospitalized rose barely whereas the state’s share of constructive assessments hit an all-time excessive.

State well being officers stated this week that they have been cautiously optimistic concerning the newest virus information developments, however there’s nonetheless widespread virus transmission within the state and the pandemic is much from over.

By Friday, Alaska’s common take a look at positivity fee during the last week had reached a document excessive of 10.12%. That means about one in 10 COVID-19 assessments carried out got here again constructive. Epidemiologists say a fee above 5% can point out widespread transmission locally and a necessity for extra testing.

Meanwhile, officers in Anchorage stated this week that virus testing efforts are actually being scaled again — together with lowering testing website hours and altering steerage on who ought to get examined — as the results of a dramatic rise within the variety of assessments being sought and an absence of funds to pay for them. Anchorage’s COVID-19 surge swelled via late summer season, bringing the municipality’s case counts to pandemic highs as extra individuals have been being examined.

Alaska’s case fee during the last week can be nonetheless the best within the nation — 779 instances per 100,000 residents — and properly above the second-worst state, Montana, which has a fee of 593 instances per 100,000, in response to the CDC.

By Friday, there have been 186 individuals hospitalized with the virus across the state, together with 30 individuals on ventilators. Hospitals say that quantity doesn’t all the time embody individuals previous their infectious interval who nonetheless want hospital care.

Alaska’s hospitals proceed to report being overburdened and understaffed.

Twenty well being care services throughout Alaska have activated disaster requirements of care, giving them the choice to prioritize look after sufferers more than likely to outlive if scarce assets make that call essential.

In apply, which means hospitals across the state are evaluating what they’ve the capability to do every day and, in some instances, are suspending some “elective,” however nonetheless pressing, procedures.

[Elective procedures become a flashpoint in the debate over Anchorage’s hospital capacity]

Of the 839 instances reported by the state Friday, 825 concerned residents and 14 concerned nonresidents.

The newly reported deaths concerned a Fairbanks girl in her 80s and a nonresident man in his 50s who examined constructive in Anchorage. In complete, 570 Alaskans and 22 nonresidents within the state have died with the virus. Alaska is twenty ninth within the nation for its 7-day per capita dying fee. Its dying fee because the begin of the pandemic is the third lowest.

By Friday, 63.7% of Alaskans 12 and older had acquired no less than one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

In August, simply 19% of all COVID-19 hospitalizations and a 3rd of all instances concerned individuals who have been vaccinated, in response to a state report revealed this week.

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