The latest case count is part of an Alaska trend of declining infections over the past two months, following a spike in November and early December that exhausted hospital capacity. Hospitalizations in Alaska are now less than a quarter of what they were during the peak in November and December.
By Tuesday, there were 35 people with COVID-19 in hospitals across the state, including five they were on fans. Other three the patients were believed to have the virus.
The COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Alaska in mid-December. By Tuesday, 144,419 people, nearly 20% of Alaska’s total population, had received at least their first shot of the vaccine, according to the state’s vaccine control panel. That is well above the national average of 13.3%.
Among Alaskans 16 and older, 26% had received at least one dose of the vaccine. The Pfizer vaccine has been licensed for use in people over the age of 16, and Moderna’s has been approved for use in people over the age of 18. At least 89,147 people had received both doses of the vaccine. Alaska has currently vaccinated more residents per capita than any other state, according to a national tracker.
Healthcare workers and nursing home staff and residents were the first people prioritized for the vaccine. Alaskans 65 and older became eligible in early January, and the state further expanded the eligibility criteria this month to include educators, people age 50 and older with a high-risk medical condition, essential first-class workers. line 50 years or older and people who live or work in congregation. settings such as shelters and prisons.
Those eligible to receive the vaccine can visit covidvax.alaska.gov or call 907-646-3322 to register and confirm eligibility. The hotline is staffed from 9 am to 6:30 pm Monday through Friday and from 9 am to 4:30 pm on weekends.
Despite the lowercase numbers, most Alaskan regions are still in the highest alert category based on the current per capita infection rate, and public health officials continue to encourage Alaskans to stay tuned. day with personal virus mitigation efforts such as hand washing, masks. attrition and social distancing. A highly contagious variant of the virus arrived in Alaska last month.
Of the 56 cases reported among Alaska residents Tuesday, there were 18 in Anchorage plus one in Eagle River; one in Homer; three in Kenai; one in Sterling; one on Kodiak; four at Fairbanks plus one at the North Pole; four at Palmer; 13 in Wasilla; one in Juneau; four in Petersburg; one in Sitka; one in Unalaska; and two in Dillingham.
Two cases were also identified among non-residents in Unalaska.
While people can be tested more than once, each case reported by the state health department represents only one person.
Data from the state does not specify whether people who test positive for COVID-19 have symptoms. More than half of the nation’s infections are transmitted by asymptomatic people, according to CDC estimates.