COVID-19. (Image CDC)

COVID-19. (Image CDC)

COVID-19 week in review: Case count jumps; new hospitalizations, deaths reported

The current average positivity rate for all tests conducted is 1.39%.

Alaska has reported 254 cases of COVID-19, two deaths and five new hospitalizations since Monday, and the number of new active cases continue to outpace the rate of recoveries, according to information from the state’s Department of Health and Social Services.

The state also conducted 14,023 tests for COVID-19 this week. The current average positivity rate for all tests conducted (122,732) is 1.39%.

The city of Seward responded to an outbreak of the disease this week, with 35 positive cases identified among residents and nonresidents since June 26.

As part of that response, the city passed new regulations Wednesday regarding public parks, face masks and large gatherings.

The Seward City Council adopted Emergency Ordinance 2020-008, which requires the wearing of masks or cloth face coverings in buildings open to the public when 6 feet of social distance cannot be maintained. Exceptions are made for children under 4, those with breathing problems and those with medical conditions that prevent them from wearing a mask.

All city-owned campgrounds are operating at 50% capacity for recreational camping purposes. In-person gatherings of 20 or more people are prohibited, except for gatherings where the purpose is the exercising of constitutional rights.

All eating and drinking establishments, retail stores, tourism operations and places of worship are limited to an indoor seating capacity of 10 people or 50% maximum occupancy, whichever is higher.

The emergency ordinance took effect immediately and remains in effect for 30 days or until the COVID-19 emergency declaration is rescinded.

There are currently 82 active cases of COVID-19 on the Kenai Peninsula and 725 active cases statewide.

Meanwhile, the state reported 19 recoveries this week. As of July 4, 544 people have recovered.

The active resident cases on the Kenai Peninsula are distributed among the following communities: Anchor Point (one), Fritz Creek (one), Homer (19), Kenai (three), Nikiski (one), Seward (25), Soldotna (nine), other north (two) and other south (10). Cases within communities with a population of fewer than 1,000 people are not individually listed but are listed as either “north” or “south” depending on their location on the Kenai Peninsula.

Currently, there are 23 people hospitalized statewide who are either positive for COVID-19 or are awaiting test results. Three of those people are being treated on ventilators.

For the latest information regarding the state’s COVID-19 response, visit covid19.alaska.gov or email covidquestions@alaska.gov.

Reach reporter Brian Mazurek at bmazurek@peninsulaclarion.com

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