Alaska returns to high alert level for 1st time since May, weekend spike in COVID-19 cases reported

Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 4:54 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Alaska’s statewide alert level has jumped to high for the first time since May after a spike in COVID-19 cases over the weekend was reported on Monday.

The state reported 456 new COVID-19 cases, which includes case counts from Friday, Saturday and Sunday. According to a release from the state, 170 resident and nonresident cases were identified on Friday, 200 were identified Saturday and 86 were identified Sunday.

Of the newly reported cases, 436 were confirmed in Alaska residents. They were identified in these communities:

  • Anchorage: 221
  • Sitka: 36
  • Wasilla: 21
  • Eagle River: 17
  • Juneau: 15
  • Soldotna: 15
  • Cordova: 14
  • Homer: 12
  • Chugiak: 9
  • Kenai: 9
  • Kodiak: 8
  • Seward: 8
  • Fairbanks: 7
  • Anchor Point: 5
  • Dillingham Census Area: 4
  • North Pole: 4
  • Palmer: 4
  • Petersburg: 4
  • Aleutians East Borough: 2
  • Delta Junction: 2
  • Kotzebue: 2
  • Kusilvak Census Area: 2
  • Nikiski: 2
  • Valdez: 2
  • Bethel: 1
  • Bethel Census Area: 1
  • Dillingham: 1
  • Douglas: 1
  • Kenai Peninsula Borough North: 1
  • Kenai Peninsula Borough South: 1
  • Matanuska-Susitna Borough: 1
  • North Slope Borough: 1
  • Skagway: 1
  • Utqiagvik: 1
  • Wrangell: 1

There were 20 new nonresident cases added to the state’s coronavirus dashboard in communities throughout the state, including nine in Anchorage, six in Juneau, one in Cordova, one in Fairbanks, one in Soldotna and one in an unknown location.

Though it was first reported on Monday, a spokesperson for DHSS said the state hit the high alert level last Friday. Before that, May 18 was the last date that Alaska was at the high alert level statewide.

The Kenai Peninsula Borough, Municipality of Anchorage and YK-Delta Region are all in high alert status, according to the state, which means there is widespread community transmission within the regions. Two additional regions, including northern Southeast Region and part of the Interior, are also in high alert.

The City and Borough of Juneau, Southwest Region and Matanuska-Susitna Region are in intermediate alert status, meaning there is moderate community transmission. The southern Southeast Region, Northwest Region and Fairbanks North Star Borough are in low alert status, with minimal community transmission.

At least 1,722 residents and nonresidents have been hospitalized with COVID-19 since the pandemic reached Alaska. Currently, 68 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 and one other is hospitalized and suspected of having the virus. Twelve of these patients are on a ventilator.

The state’s vaccine monitoring dashboard shows 57% of Alaskans 12 and older have received at least the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in the state, while 52% of Alaskans 12 and older are fully vaccinated.

The area with the highest percentage of fully vaccinated Alaskans 12 and older is the Juneau region with 73%. The Anchorage region ranks seventh, with 54%.

A total of 2,437,301 COVID-19 tests have been conducted in Alaska, although that number does not reflect the unique number of individuals who have been tested for the virus.

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