Alaska on Tuesday reported 156 coronavirus infections and no COVID-19-related deaths, according to data from the Department of Health and Social Services.
Although case counts and hospitalizations in Alaska remain below what they were during a peak in November and December, the state’s average daily case rate have been increasing in recent weeks. Most regions in the state are still in the highest alert category based on their current per capita rate of infection.
Health officials continue to encourage Alaskans to wear face coverings in public, avoid large gatherings, wash their hands frequently, and get vaccinated against COVID-19 to prevent further spread.
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 Tuesday, 270,960 people — about 44% of Alaskans eligible for a shot — had received at least their first dose, according to the state’s vaccine monitoring dashboard. At least 214,562 people — about 36% of Alaskans 16 and older — were considered fully vaccinated.
By Tuesday, there were 54 people with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 in hospitals throughout the state, far below a peak in late 2020 but part of a slight increase over the last few weeks.
Of the 135 cases reported in Alaska residents, there were 48 in Anchorage, plus three in Eagle River; 33 in Wasilla; 18 in Palmer; nine in Fairbanks; four in Kenai; two in Soldotna; one in Healy; three in North Pole; one in Tok; one in Houston; one in Juneau; two in Ketchikan; one in Sitka; two in Wrangell; and one in Unalaska.
Among communities smaller than 1,000 people which aren’t named to protect privacy, there was one in the Copper River Census Area; two in the Kusilvak Census Area; one in Bristol Bay plus Lake and Peninsula; and one in the Dillingham Census Area.
There were also 21 cases among nonresidents: 20 in Unalaska and one in Homer.
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.
— Annie Berman