The number of statewide COVID-19 cases increased by more than two dozen over the weekend — with more than half of those identified on the Kenai Peninsula.
The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services announced 11 new resident cases in six communities of the illness caused by the novel coronavirus on Friday, as well as two nonresident cases. On Saturday, the state announced another 12 resident cases in four Alaska communities, as well as two nonresident cases.
Friday’s and Saturday’s numbers reflect the number of new cases reported Thursday and Friday, respectively.
DHSS announced on Friday two new cases in Homer, one new case in Nikiski, one new case in Anchor Point and one in an unidentified Kenai Peninsula Borough community. Two peninsula cases announced Saturday are in Homer, two are in Anchor Point and six are in “other” communities on the peninsula. The “other” category is used for communities in the borough with fewer than 1,000 people.
Elsewhere in Alaska, two resident cases identified in Eagle River were announced Saturday, as well as two nonresident cases in Anchorage. Four cases in Anchorage and two in Eagle River were announced Friday, as well as two nonresident cases in Anchorage. Friday’s nonresident cases were a seafood worker and a visitor. The nonresident cases announced on Saturday were both seafood workers. Nonresident cases, which are listed separately from the Alaska cases, total 45.
In a Saturday press release, Alaska’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink said it was “extremely important” that Alaskans continue with prevention measures such as staying 6 feet apart from others, washing hands often, avoiding touching one’s face, wearing cloth face coverings when out in public, keeping social circles small and staying home when sick.
“COVID-19 activity is rising in Alaska, especially in Anchorage and the Kenai Peninsula. We need to consider that anyone we interact with could have COVID-19,” Zink said. “All Alaskans and visitors to our state should take personal responsibility to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
There have been 536 cases of COVID-19 in Alaska residents. No new deaths or hospitalizations from the disease were announced Friday or Saturday. There have been a total of 48 hospitalizations and 10 deaths related to COVID-29. Recovered cases now total 382, with two new recovered cases recorded yesterday. A total of 63,901 tests have been conducted.
• By Clarion Staff