COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)

Kenai Peninsula sees sharp rise in COVID-19 activity

Weekly cases of COVID-19 by region are reported via the department’s Respiratory Virus Snapshot

A sharp increase in the number of weekly cases of COVID-19 was reported by the State Department of Health for the Kenai Peninsula Borough in data updated Thursday.

Weekly cases of COVID-19 by region are reported via the department’s Respiratory Virus Snapshot. The snapshot was updated Thursday to include data through Jan. 27.

Starting in December, the snapshot shows that several areas of the state saw significant spikes in COVID activity, especially in Anchorage, Juneau and the Interior. Though local numbers for the Kenai Peninsula Borough did increase in December, they did not rise so sharply as in other areas of the state and did not rise above the counts seen locally during a previous wave in the summer. As of this week, the local count has risen abruptly and sharply.

Regional case rates are reported as the number of cases per 100,000 residents. In November, the borough was reporting a rate as low as 8.5 cases per 100,000 residents. As of last week, data through Jan. 20, that number had climbed to 44.1. As of Jan. 27, the rate is 84.8 — higher than the rate reported in Anchorage this week, though the city has been declining for the last few weeks.

The local case rate is the highest recorded for the Kenai Peninsula Borough in the snapshot, far greater than the previous peak of 49.2 reported during a September wave of the virus. The snapshot has only been in use since the department’s COVID-19 Data Hub was discontinued that month. Archived data from the hub isn’t directly comparable to data being reported by the department.

Statewide, COVID-19 cases have declined for three consecutive weeks. The snapshot shows that from a low of 132 cases per week on Nov. 25, counts rose to a peak of 716 on Jan. 6 but have since declined to 632 as of Jan. 27.

Nationally, hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 have been declining since early January, after similarly spiking in November. The CDC reports that roughly 2,000 people are dying each week from COVID-19 in the United States.

For more information about COVID-19 in Alaska, visit health.alaska.gov.

Reach reporter Jake Dye at jacob.dye@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in News

Dr. Kim Thiele stands by a wall of newspaper clippings and images of family members and precursors in his office near Kenai on Monday. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
‘A ministry for me’

Kalifornsky doctor wraps up career after 44 years

Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, R-Nikiski, listens to testimony during a Senate Community and Regional Affairs Committee hearing on Thursday in Juneau. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Bjorkman game seizure bill received warmly in Senate committee

Of the roughly 150 animals the department takes each year, an average of between one and two are determined to be wrongfully seized

A collage of photos of Nikiski North Star Elementary students taking swimming lessons at the Nikiski Pool. (Photo collages provided by Nikiski North Star Elementary)
Community effort puts 200 Nikiski North Star students through swimming lessons

The lessons covered “everything,” from basic flotation to constructing rough-but-functional life jackets out of clothing

From left, Rep. Andi Story, D-Juneau, hugs Rep. Stanley Wright, R-Anchorage, after House passage of sweeping education legislation while Rep. Maxine Dibert, D-Fairbanks, watches on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
House passes BSA increase, with other education provisions

The bill now goes back to the Senate, where lawmakers must approve the bill as-is before it can head to the governor’s desk

Rep. Justin Ruffridge speaks about
House considers, rejects multiple school funding amendments during Wednesday floor debate

Over several hours, lawmakers considered six different increases in the Base Student Allocation to public schools

U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan addresses members of the Alaska Legislature in the House chambers on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire)
Dismissing critics, Sullivan touts LNG project

During his annual address to the Alaska Legislature on Wednesday, the U.S. senator said state leaders should be doing everything they can to make the project successful

From left, Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, R-Nikiski, east side setnetter Ken Coleman and Konrad Jackson present information about a bill establishing a voluntary buyback program for east side setnet fishery permits during a Senate Finance Committee meeting on Monday, Feb. 19, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Senate committee hears setnet buyback bill

The East Side of Cook Inlet Set Net Fleet Reduction Act is sponsored by Nikiski Sen. Jesse Bjorkman

Rep. Justin Ruffridge, R-Soldotna, speaks in support of debating an omnibus education bill in the Alaska House Chambers on Monday, Feb. 19, 2024 in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Tie vote kills early House debate on education funding

Lawmakers went into an hourslong recess that ended with adjournment until Tuesday morning

Most Read