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More Deaths, Hospitalizations, But Most Spread COVID-19 Without Being Very Sick

Ellen Grover
Alaska Department of Health and Social Services

Alaska is continuing to see high daily new COVID-19 case counts and hospitalizations. The state Department of Health and Social Services announced 405 new Alaska resident COVID-19 cases recorded Monday.

Alaska’s average daily case rate is now 49 per 100,000 people.

The DHSS reported no new deaths, but there were five additional hospitalizations and there are currently 86 confirmed COVID-19 patients, plus another 9 awaiting test results hospitalized statewide. Nine patients are on ventilators.  

A DHSS issued analysis of last week shows virus transmission accelerated in Alaska for a record 5th week in a row, with 2,600 new cases, record high numbers of COVID-19 patients in Alaska hospitals, and 15 virus deaths, 4 of which occurred within the week. 

State chief medical officer Anne Zink addressed the situation during an online question and answer session yesterday.

AM Covid Zink 1: Q:”…across the state.”

Dr. Zink emphasized that the sheer number of cases is the issue, as in general most people are not getting severely ill and those who are hospitalized are less likely to die.

AM Covid Zink 2: Q:”…better treatment options.”

Zink added that Alaska is entering a really challenging phase of the pandemic.

AM Covid Zink 3: Q:”…a lot of virus.”

Despite having 300 people doing contact tracing, State epidemiologist Dr. Joe McLaughlin said that the state cannot keep up with new cases and is relying on the public to help slow spread of the disease.

AM Covid Mclaughlin 1: Q:”…monitor for symptoms.”

Dr. McLaughlin underscored the importance of getting tested right away if you have any Covid symptoms.

AM Covid McLaughlin 2: Q:”…test being positive.” 

McLaughlin said knowing that allows an infected person to take immediate action to both self-isolate and reach out to those they’ve had close contact with.