COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)

503 new cases; borough positivity rate hits 14.65%

Affected peninsula communities include Kenai, Other North, Soldotna and Seward

The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services reported 503 new COVID-19 cases in Alaska on Monday, including 18 on the Kenai Peninsula. Affected peninsula communities include Kenai with six cases, Other North with five cases, Soldotna with four cases and Seward with three cases. The new cases bring Alaska’s statewide total to 28,273, including 27,085 residents and 1,188 nonresidents.

Over the past week, the Kenai Peninsula Borough has conducted 1,522 tests and saw a positivity rate of 14.65%. The current statewide alert level, based on the average daily case rate for the last two weeks, is high at 76.6. The Kenai Peninsula Borough’s alert level is also high at 93.37.

Locally, Central Peninsula Hospital has conducted 8,906 tests with 8,298 negative, 479 positive and 124 pending results. As of Monday, CPH was treating 11 patients who were COVID-19 positive as well as 17 positive residents at Heritage Place Skilled Nursing facility. Fifty four of the hospital’s approximate 1,000 total staff were in quarantine due either to having tested positive for COVID-19 or having been identified as a close contact of someone who tested positive. None of CPH’s ventilators were in use as of Monday.

South Peninsula Hospital had conducted 13,086 tests with 12,479 negative, 284 positive and 323 pending results as of Monday.

The state also reported five new hospitalizations and no new deaths. To date, 605 Alaskans have been hospitalized due to COVID-19 and 102 have died. Currently, there are 149 people hospitalized in Alaska who are COVID-19 positive or who are considered persons under investigation. Nineteen of the patients are on ventilators.

Alaska’s daily positivity rate for the past seven days, during which 29,768 tests were conducted, is 8.13%. To date, 933,016 tests have been conducted in Alaska.

In addition to the 18 cases on the peninsula, the state also reported 256 cases in Anchorage, 55 in Bethel Census Area, 34 in Fairbanks, 31 in Eagle River, 18 in Bethel, 14 in Wasilla, nine in Chugiak, nine in Palmer, six in Kodiak, six in Kotzebue, five in Juneau, five in Nome, five in Sitka, five in Valdez-Cordova Census Area, four in North Pole, four in Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area, three in Aleutians East Borough, two in Hooper Bay, two in Kusilvak Census Area, two in Yakutat plus Hoonah-Angoon and one each in Cordova, Dillingham, Douglas, Ketchikan, Northwest Arctic Borough, Utqiagvik, Willow and one with a location still under investigation. Two nonresident cases were also reported in Anchorage.

Testing locations on the Kenai Peninsula

On the central peninsula, testing is available at Capstone Family Clinic, K-Beach Medical, Soldotna Professional Pharmacy, Central Peninsula Urgent Care, Peninsula Community Health Services, Urgent Care of Soldotna, the Kenai Public Health Center and Odyssey Family Practice. Call Kenai Public Health at 907-335-3400 for information on testing criteria for each location.

In Homer, testing is available from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily at the lower level of South Peninsula Hospital’s Specialty Clinic as well as through SVT Health & Wellness clinics in Homer, Seldovia and Anchor Point. Call ahead at the hospital at 907-235-0235 and at the SVT clinics at 907-226-2228.

In Ninilchik, NTC Community Clinic is providing testing on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The testing is only for those traveling, symptomatic, needing testing for medical procedures, or with a known exposure after seven days. Only 20 tests will be offered per day. To make an appointment to be tested at the NTC Community Clinic, call 907-567-3970.

In Seward, testing is available at Providence Seward, Seward Community Health Center, Glacier Family Medicine and North Star Health Clinic.

Reach reporter Ashlyn O’Hara at ashlyn.ohara@peninsulaclarion.com.

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