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Alaska reports more than 300 COVID-19 cases Friday, no new deaths

Published: Dec. 3, 2021 at 5:59 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Alaska reported over 300 additional COVID-19 cases on Friday, but no new deaths. Hospitalizations due to the virus also remain much lower than they were just last month.

The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services reported 318 COVID-19 cases on Friday, six of which are among nonresidents. Cases have continued to decrease since September and October, when Alaska was in the midst of a case surge spurred by the highly contagious delta variant.

Starting on Monday, the state health department will return to reporting new COVID-19 cases and data three days a week on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays. Data is not reported on holidays.

For several weeks this fall at the height of the surge, Alaska lead the nation in the rate of new COVID-19 cases per capita. Now, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Alaska ranks 21st out of all U.S. states with a case rate of 297 cases per 100,000 people over the last week.

While Alaska’s case rate and alert level still remain high, state case data shows new COVID-19 cases have steadily decreased since mid-October. There was a 4% decrease in cases last week compared to the week of Nov. 19-25, the data shows.

The state did not report any new COVID-19 deaths of Alaska residents on Friday. Since the pandemic began in Alaska in March 2020, the state has officially recorded a total of 853 Alaskans and 30 nonresidents whose deaths have been tied to the virus.

The number of people hospitalized in Alaska with COVID-19 remained the same from Thursday to Friday, according to the health department, which reported 71 people hospitalized with the virus on Friday. The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 is significantly less than the more than 200 COVID-19-related hospitalizations reported just last month. A record high of 243 hospitalizations was reported on Oct. 27.

According to the state’s hospital data dashboard, 10 of the current 71 COVID-19 patients are on a ventilator.

Alaska’s rate of positive COVID-19 tests also continues to drop. On Friday, the state health department reported Alaska has an average positivity rate of 5.26% over the last week. Health experts use the threshold of 5% as an indicator of widespread transmission of the virus in a community.

The state has administered more than 3.5 million COVID-19 tests since the pandemic began.

The state’s vaccine monitoring dashboard shows that 56% of eligible Alaskans 5 and older are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and that 61% have gotten at least one vaccine dose. The dashboard shows that 112,544 Alaskans have gotten a booster shot since Aug. 13.

Of the 318 COVID-19 cases reported by the state on Friday, 312 were identified among Alaska residents of the following communities:

  • Anchorage: 74
  • Greater Wasilla area: 26
  • Ketchikan: 23
  • Kusilvak Census Area: 21
  • Bethel Census Area: 16
  • Fairbanks: 15
  • Greater Palmer area: 13
  • Hooper Bay: 13
  • Northwest Arctic Borough: 12
  • Juneau: 11
  • Nome Census Area: 9
  • North Pole: 8
  • Kenai: 7
  • Metlakatla: 5
  • Nome: 5
  • Petersburg: 5
  • Eagle River: 4
  • Ketchikan Gateway Borough: 4
  • Bethel: 3
  • Copper River Census Area: 3
  • Kenai Peninsula Borough South: 3
  • Kotzebue: 3
  • Matanuska-Susitna Borough: 3
  • Soldotna: 3
  • Sterling: 3
  • Kodiak: 2
  • Sitka: 2
  • Bristol Bay plus Lake and Peninsula: 1
  • Chugiak: 1
  • Denali Borough: 1
  • Dillingham: 1
  • Ester: 1
  • Haines: 1
  • Healy: 1
  • Homer: 1
  • Hoonah-Angoon and Yakutat combined: 1
  • Houston/Big Lake: 1
  • Kodiak Island Borough: 1
  • North Slope Borough: 1
  • Seward: 1
  • Sutton-Alpine: 1
  • Utqiaġvik: 1
  • Willow: 1

The state reported six additional nonresident COVID-19 cases on Friday — three in Anchorage, two in Fairbanks and one in an unknown location.

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