Anchorage Health Department sees an increase in COVID-19 testing

Published: Aug. 25, 2021 at 5:14 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - As COVID-19 cases continue to rise across Alaska, the Municipality of Anchorage is no different. It is seeing impacts when it comes to the availability of COVID-19 vaccines and giving people the opportunity to be tested.

Anchorage Health Department Public Health Division Manager Christy Lawton said in an email to Alaksa’s News source that over the last several weeks, they have been seeing a daily total of people getting tested exceed 1,000 per day at Visit Healthcare sites — a Municipality of Anchorage contractor.

She went on to write that Tuesday over 1,400 people were tested at their sites.

To deal with the increase, Lawton wrote the Municipality of Anchorage has expanded capacity and hours in response and will be further expanding as they bring on additional staff.

But turnaround times for the tests continue to remain good. The average time took 24.3 with zero tests taking more than 72 hours, according to Lawton.

Lawton went on to write that Anchorage is also seeing increased COVID-19 vaccinations across the city.

“In early July, the average was ~60 doses per day; now it’s ~100 per day and the increasing trend may continue,” Lawton wrote in the email. “In the upcoming weeks, the third doses and possible boosters may cause our daily numbers to spike significantly.”

Lawton added right now the city has no reports of any supply shortages that would deter daily operations of testing and vaccinating. But one thing Lawton wrote was they are seeing is an ongoing short supply of the J&J vaccine.

Testing for COVID-19 at city sites is free seven days a week with no ID or insurance required.

For more information about vaccines and locations, visit to find a site near you or call 907-646-3322.

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