Alaska reported 157 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, according to the Department of Health and Social Services COVID-19 dashboard.
Local officials in Juneau also reported that a resident in her 60s with COVID-19 died early Tuesday morning at Bartlett Regional Hospital.
Including her death, which was not yet reflected in state data, 61 Alaskans have died with COVID-19 since the pandemic began here in March. Still, the state’s death rate per 100,000 residents remained among the lowest in the country.
The state’s daily case counts hit record highs Saturday and Sunday, when 249 cases were reported. State officials warn high numbers are expected to continue due to broad community spread of the virus, especially in Anchorage, Fairbanks and northern communities.
Tuesday marked the 20th straight day that daily reported cases have tipped into triple digits. The last surge in Alaska was in July, but case counts leveled off and then declined.
Statewide as of Tuesday, 44 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 while 15 other hospital patients were awaiting test results, according to state data.
Of the new cases reported by the state Tuesday, it wasn’t clear how many patients were showing symptoms of the virus when they tested positive. While people might get tested more than once, each case reported by the state health department only represents one person.
Of the 153 new cases of COVID-19 involving residents, 66 were in Anchorage, plus two in Chugiak and one in Eagle River; one was in Homer, five were in Kenai, six were in Soldotna, and two were in Sterling; two were in Cordova and one was in Valdez; 23 were in Fairbanks and four were in North Pole; eight were in Palmer and four were in Wasilla; nine were in Utqiagvik; three were in Kotzebue; one was in Haines; five were in Juneau; four were in Bethel; and one was in Chevak.
Among communities smaller than 1,000 not identified to protect confidentiality, there was one case each in the northern and southern Kenai Peninsula; one in Fairbanks North Star Borough; one in Northwest Arctic Borough; and one in Kusilvak Census Area.
There were four nonresident cases reported Monday: two in Anchorage; one in the Kenai Peninsula Borough; and one in the Aleutians West Census Area.
The state’s test positivity rate as of Monday was 4.62% over a seven-day rolling average. The rate reflects the number of positive results divided by total tests performed. Health officials say levels over 5% may indicate communities aren’t doing enough testing.
-- Zaz Hollander
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