Alaska on Friday reported 205 coronavirus infections and no COVID-19-related deaths, according to data from the Department of Health and Social Services.
Overall, case counts and hospitalizations in Alaska remain below what they were during a peak in November and December. However, Alaska is now experiencing an increase in its average daily case rate. Most regions in the state are still in the highest alert category based on their current per capita rate of infection.
Alaska’s death rate per capita is still among the lowest in the country, but the state’s size and vulnerable health care system complicate national comparisons. In total, 309 Alaskans and four nonresidents with COVID-19 have died since the pandemic reached the state last spring.
Alaska in March became the first state in the country to open vaccine eligibility to anyone 16 and older who lives or works in the state. You can visit covidvax.alaska.gov or call 907-646-3322 to sign up for a vaccine appointment; new appointments are added regularly. The phone line is staffed 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekends.
By Friday, 253,240 people — about 41% of Alaskans eligible for a shot — had received at least their first dose, according to the state’s vaccine monitoring dashboard. At least 172,077 people — about 30% of Alaskans 16 and older — were considered fully vaccinated.
By Friday, there were 42 people with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 in hospitals throughout the state, far below a peak in late 2020 but a slight increase compared to recent weeks.
Of the 197 cases identified among Alaska residents Friday, there were 65 in Anchorage, plus six in Chugiak and five in Eagle River; 34 in Wasilla; 24 in Fairbanks; 13 in Palmer; six in Seward; six in Soldotna; three in Kodiak; three in North Pole; three in Delta Junction; three in Big Lake; two in Healy; one in Sterling; one in Salcha; one in Houston; one in Sutton-Alpine; one in Willow; and one in Juneau.
Among communities smaller than 1,000 that aren’t named to protect residents’ privacy, there were 13 in Bethel Census Area; three in the Mat-Su Borough; and two in the Kusilvak Census Area.
There was also eight nonresident cases reported: two in Anchorage, two in Valdez, one in Fairbanks, one in Ketchikan, and two in unidentified regions of the state.
While people might get tested more than once, each case reported by the state health department represents only one person.
The state’s data doesn’t specify whether people testing positive for COVID-19 have symptoms. More than half of the nation’s infections are transmitted from asymptomatic people, according to CDC estimates.
Note: The state no longer updates is coronavirus dashboard on the weekends, and will instead include that data in Monday’s report.
— Annie Berman