Friday, September 25th Update: More Bad News - 128 New Cases & 6 Deaths Added

Six Alaskan Deaths Added To State Tally Alaska Alert Level Map   An Anchorage man in his 60's died yesterday.  Five other Alas...

Six Alaskan Deaths Added To State Tally

Alaska Alert Level Map  

An Anchorage man in his 60's died yesterday. 

Five other Alaskan men died earlier and were verified just now to be COVID-19 deaths. They were:

 • A man who was an Anchorage resident in his 60's and died in July.
 • A man who was a Fairbanks resident in his 60's and died in August.
 • A man who was an Anchorage resident in his 50's and died in August.
 • A man from the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area in his 70's who died in August.
 • A man in his 70's from Soldotna who died out of state.

One of the dangerous aspects of this disease is that some people have it but don't know it. Others may be too embarrassed to get tested. If people don't get tested it is hard to find out exactly how many people in a community are sick with COVID-19 and determine what the chances are that you can get it.

Alaska
Friday's Report Shows Thursday's Numbers 


Anchorage

Anchorage continues to be the epicenter of COVID-19 in Alaska. In the September 25th report, 68 Anchorage residents out of 127 Alaskans tested positive. Since March, the Anchorage area has had almost 4,065 positive coronavirus cases. Thirty Anchorage residents have died from COVID-19. No one is sure to what extent the homeless population in Anchorage has become ill with coronavirus. The CDC came to Anchorage to help Anchorage deal with the surge in homeless cases.

Copper Valley

The Copper Valley now has 50 know total cases, as reported by CRNA with 1 new positive case in the week ending September 25th. Valdez, with a slightly larger population, has a total of 11 cases and Cordova has only had fourteen cases. So those two cities have had far fewer cases than the Copper Valley, even though both cities have hosted seafood workers at processing plants all summer.

Alaska

Most of Alaska's cases have occurred in Anchorage, but the virus is widespread throughout Alaska. On Thursday, September 25th, the cases were spread out in 17 different communities. 

Juneau City and Borough had the highest rate of viral transmission, having increased its rate to 16.3, continuing the rise from 13.4 last week and 6.3 the week before.

Fairbanks North Star Borough had the second highest rate.(15.9)

The Northwest Region had the steepest increase last week. 

Anchorage remain high but has gotten slightly better.

In the state as a whole, As of September 25th, the number of occupied hospital beds is still about 64.7%. The number of ICU beds in use is 85 out of 153 with 68 still available.  The number of ventilators in use statewide remains at 60. 

This chart shows the two month progression of infections across Alaska starting on July 20th to September 20th, 2020. Chart By Country Journal From Data Charts At Bottom Of The Page As Presented By Alaska Dept. Of Health & Social Services

The Alaska projection chart of new cases (below) shows a guess about whether there will be more or fewer new cases in the future. Notice how weekend totals are almost always lower than weekdays.




Doctors Worry As New Cases & Deaths Start To Increase 
As schools reopen children often pass colds (colds are a coronavirus) to one another. The worry is that children and teenagers will bring home COVID-19 to their siblings, villages, parents and grandparents. The danger is that children could become vectors of the spread. The problem at colleges is that young adults are not taking either the virus or safety measures seriously.

Labor Day and late summer festivals and large gatherings that involve a lot of people without masks or social distancing may well become "super spreader" events.

Flu season typically starts in the fall as schools reopen and people spend more time indoors and at sporting events. The combination of flu and COVID-19 infections could fill hospitals. See "When Should You Gat A Flu Shot."

For Whom The Bell Tolls

On September 22, 8 days before the end of September, the United States reached the sad milestone of 200,000 dead from the pandemic.  Projections from Washington State now say that people must take wearing masks seriously or the death rate in the United States will reach 400,000 deaths by the end of December. Scientists say that wearing masks could reduce the number of deaths by 50%. 

Here are steps you can take to help reduce the spread of coronavirus 

Keep your distance from others. 
Stay at least six feet away from people outside your household as much as possible.

Wear a mask outside your home. A mask protects others from your germs, and it protects you from infection as well. The more people who wear masks, the more we all stay safer.

Wash your hands often. Anytime you come in contact with a surface outside your home, scrub with soap for at least 20 seconds, rinse and then dry your hands with a clean towel.

Avoid touching your face. The virus can spread when our hands come into contact with the virus, and we touch our nose, mouth or eyes. Try to keep your hands away from your face unless you have just recently washed them. 

Avoid indoor office meetings that last longer than 15 minutes.  During the meeting: Keep doors and windows open if possible, keep all attendees spaced apart, and everyone should wear a mask. You are more likely to catch the coronavirus in a poorly ventilated area.

Tracking Alaska's Previous Numbers








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