Alaska News

Alaska reports 3-day tally of just over 1,860 COVID-19 cases as decline continues

Alaska on Monday reported 1,864 new COVID-19 cases and a slight drop in the number of COVID-positive people hospitalized as the ongoing decline in the omicron variant surge continues.

The state on Monday reported 1,822 new cases in residents and another 42 in nonresidents, as well as 103 hospitalized COVID-positive patients statewide.

On Friday, the state reported about 1,800 new cases — over a two-day period, rather than three — and 105 COVID-positive patients hospitalized around Alaska.

The state now reports COVID-related deaths only on Wednesday. Since the pandemic began, a total of 1,081 Alaskans and another 33 nonresidents have died from the virus.

Generally, new case data does not reflect the number of people testing positive using at-home tests, which are increasingly popular as health officials encourage frequent testing as a way to prevent viral spread.

The 10,902 cases reported in Alaskans the first week in February marked a roughly 30% decrease from the week before, according to an Alaska Department of Health and Social Services weekly report.

Despite reporting fewer cases week by week, Alaska’s seven-day new case rate continues to lead other U.S. states, according to a CDC tracker.

State health officials last week also confirmed they are monitoring the BA.2, the new “stealth” omicron subvariant, which first arrived in Alaska last month but does not appear to cause more severe illness than other strains.

[Boosters wane in effectiveness after 4 months but show sturdy protection against hospitalization, CDC study shows]

Data shows vaccines appear to work well against symptomatic infection, especially for people who have received boosters.

Unvaccinated Alaskans are more than nine times more likely to be hospitalized due to COVID-19 than Alaskans who are fully vaccinated, including boosters, according to the state’s weekly report. Unvaccinated Alaskans are about two and a half times more likely to be hospitalized due to COVID-19 than Alaskans who completed their primary vaccination series only.

As of Monday, 62.1% of eligible Alaskans had completed their primary vaccine series. Just 26.4% had received a booster.

Zaz Hollander

Longtime ADN reporter Zaz Hollander is based in the Mat-Su and is currently focused on coverage of the coronavirus in Alaska. She also covers the Mat-Su region, aviation and general assignments. Contact her at zhollander@adn.com.

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