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Alaska News

Tracking COVID-19 in Alaska: 215 cases reported Tuesday, no new deaths

  • Author: Anchorage Daily News
  • Updated: October 20
  • Published October 20
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The state on Tuesday reported 215 new cases of COVID-19 and no new deaths, according to the Department of Health and Social Services COVID-19 dashboard.

State data shows that 67 Alaskans have died with COVID-19 since the pandemic began here in March. The state’s per capita death rate remains among the lowest in the country.

Alaska’s daily reported cases have hit triple digits for 27 straight days — the biggest surge in cases during the pandemic so far — and case numbers are projected to continue to rise.

The state’s average case rate over 14 days, a number that is used to gauge community spread, also keeps rising. As of Tuesday, most of the state was in a high alert level, with more than 10 cases per 100,000 people.

The Northwest region, at 37.23 cases per 100,000 residents, was closely followed by the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta region with 36.65. Anchorage was at 32.75 and the Fairbanks North Star Borough region was at 32.92. A large Interior region surrounding Fairbanks was at 19.19. The City and Borough of Juneau was at 14.96, the Kenai Peninsula Borough was 14.56 and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough was at 12.75.

Statewide as of Tuesday, 38 people were hospitalized with COVID-19, according to state data.

Of the new cases, 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 213 new cases of COVID-19 involving residents, there were 111 cases in Anchorage; 21 in Wasilla; 18 in Fairbanks; nine in Bethel; six in Soldotna; six in Utqiagvik; six in Juneau; four in Eagle River; three in Kenai; two in Homer; two in Palmer; two in Healy; two in Skagway; one in Chugiak; one in Anchor Point; one in Seward; one in Sterling; one in Kodiak; one in North Pole; one in Kotzebue; one in Chevak; and one in an unidentified region of the state.

Among communities smaller than 1,000 not identified to protect confidentiality, there were two cases in the Valdez-Cordova Census Area; two in the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area; two in the Northwest Arctic Borough; two in the Bethel Census Area; one in the northern Kenai Peninsula Borough; one in the southern Kenai Peninsula Borough; one in the Mat-Su Borough; and one in the Nome Census Area.

The state reported two nonresident cases, one in Anchorage and one in an unidentified region of the state.

The state’s test positivity rate as of Tuesday was 4.25% over a seven-day rolling average. The rate reflects the number of positive results divided by total tests performed. Health officials say levels higher than 5% may indicate communities aren’t doing enough testing.

— Annie Berman

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