Alaska reports 6 deaths, nearly 500 COVID cases Tuesday
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The state of Alaska reported six COVID-19 deaths on Tuesday along with close to 500 additional COVID-19 cases. Hospitalizations dropped below 200 for the first time in over two weeks.
The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services reported 499 additional COVID-19 infections on Tuesday, five of which are among nonresidents. State case data shows a 17% decrease in cases this week compared to the week before, and an overall decline in new cases compared to late September.
State data shows there were 8,733 COVID-19 cases reported the week of Sept. 21-27, and that there have been 4,188 COVID-19 cases the week of Oct. 26-Nov. 1.
However, Alaska does still lead the nation for the rate of new cases per capita, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Alaska’s current rate of 605.2 cases per 100,000 people is almost four times the national case rate.
Also on Tuesday, the state reported six additional deaths related to COVID-19, one of them a person in their 20s. All six people were Alaska residents, according to the state health department. They were an Anchorage woman 80 or older, an Anchorage man in his 60s, an Anchorage woman in her 50s, an Anchorage woman in her 30s, an Anchorage woman in her 20s and a woman in her 70s from the southern Kenai Peninsula Borough.
These deaths bring the total number of virus-related deaths reported by the state since the pandemic began in Alaska to 708 residents and 26 nonresidents.
State hospitalizations due to COVID-19 had crept back up above 200 in mid-October, and have remained above 200 since then. Alaska reported a record high of 243 COVID-19 hospitalizations on Oct. 27. On Tuesday, the state reported hospitalizations had dropped down to 196.
Of the people hospitalized with COVID-19 across the state, 27 of them are on ventilators, the state’s hospital data dashboard shows.
Alaska also continues to see a high rate of positive COVID-19 tests, though that rate has come down over the last few weeks. State testing data shows Alaska currently has an average rate of positivity of 8.66% over the last week. Health experts say anything over 5% indicates widespread virus transmission in a community.
The state’s vaccine monitoring dashboard shows that 60.4% of all eligible Alaska residents 12 and older are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and that more than 65% have gotten at least an initial vaccine dose. On Tuesday, the CDC gave final approval for authorization of a kid-sized vaccine shot from Pfizer for children ages 5-11.
The state of Alaska ordered thousands of pediatric vaccine doses last week in anticipation of the final authorization, and the Anchorage School District has set up several vaccine clinics to accommodate families who would like to get their younger children vaccinated.
Of the 499 COVID-19 cases reported by the state on Tuesday, 494 of them were identified among Alaska residents of the following communities:
- Anchorage: 152
- Greater Wasilla area: 76
- Fairbanks: 56
- Greater Palmer area: 29
- Nome Census Area: 26
- Kenai: 18
- Eagle River: 16
- Soldotna: 16
- Utqiaġvik: 13
- North Pole: 12
- Juneau: 10
- Kodiak: 8
- Chugiak: 6
- Homer: 6
- Petersburg: 6
- Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area: 6
- Houston/Big Lake: 3
- Kotzebue: 3
- Nome: 3
- Sitka: 3
- Sutton-Alpine: 3
- Anchor Point: 2
- Dillingham Census Area: 2
- Ketchikan: 2
- Northwest Arctic Borough: 2
- Unalaska: 2
- Willow: 2
- Bethel: 1
- Bethel Census Area: 1
- Bristol Bay/Lake and Peninsula: 1
- Copper River Census Area: 1
- Fritz Creek: 1
- Haines: 1
- Kenai Peninsula Borough South: 1
- Kusilvak Census Area: 1
- Matanuska-Susitna Borough: 1
- Sterling: 1
- Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area: 1
The state also reported five additional nonresident cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday — one each in Anchorage, Fairbanks, the greater Wasilla area, Kenai and Soldotna.
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