Coronavirus intensifying across Washington state: Department of Health

Oct 28 2020, 2:10 pm

COVID-19 cases in most counties across the state appear to be increasing as of September.

According to a recent report from the Washington State Department of Health (WSDOH), coronavirus case counts are increasing in both eastern and western Washington.

The reproductive number, or estimated number of new people that each coronavirus patient will infect, is hovering around 1.34 in western Washington and 1.12 in eastern Washington. If the reproductive number declines well below one, it would indicate that the infection rate is dropping.

The department is seeing high growth rates in the 25 to 39 and 40 to 59 age groups as well as those in the Snohomish, King, and Pierce counties. According to the WSDOH, “this wide distribution suggests increases are due to broad community spread, not driven by a single type of activity or setting.”

Larger counties such as Clark, Pierce, Snohomish, and Thurston are seeing steady increases, while smaller counties such as Grant, Kittitas, Skagit, and Walla Walla are experiencing smaller increases. Case counts in Benton, Franklin, and Yakima counties seem to have plateaued, while Whitman county is seeing fluctuating cases.

“Any spike in COVID-19 cases will jeopardize our progress toward reopening schools, strain our healthcare system and increase risks during holiday gatherings,” said Deputy Secretary of Health for COVID-19 Response Lacy Fehrenbach in a press release. “High rates in the community increase the chance that someone at your gathering—even people you know well and trust—could have COVID-19. If we act now, we can get these increases in control in time for the holidays.”

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