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New Alaska COVID-19 cases include traveler to Y-K village

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A person who traveled from Anchorage to Bethel and then continued to a village in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta tested positive for COVID-19, officials announced Friday.

The traveler is the second person to test positive for COVID-19 in the region, Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corp. said in a written statement.

The person did not show symptoms when tested for COVID-19 at the Bethel airport, where the health corporation has been offering COVID-19 testing to people who arrive from Anchorage since April 23, the release said.

Usually, about half of the travelers decline testing when the reach the airport in Bethel from Anchorage, according to the health corporation.

“This case highlights the urgent need for all passengers to be tested,” the statement said.

A team is headed to village to perform screening and testing, YKHC said in the release.

The health corporation is not releasing the name of the village, though radio station KYUK in Bethel reported Friday that Nunapitchuk residents confirmed they were under a lockdown Friday after the person arrived to their village.

The case will not appear in the state’s overall case count until Saturday because positive cases are announced based on the previous day’s results.

The state also announced two more positive cases of COVID-19 in Alaska. A seafood industry worker from outside of the state tested positive for COVID-19 in Anchorage and an Anchorage woman in her 20s also received a positive result Thursday.

All of the staff and inmates at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center in Juneau were set to be tested for COVID-19 by Friday evening after two more staff members tested positive for the illness earlier in the week, Sarah Gallagher a spokesperson for the state’s Department of Corrections said. A total of 10 employees at the facility have tested positive for COVID-19.

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