OKANOGAN – It’s a new year, but the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 in Okanogan County is still high with a two-week incidence rate of 428.3 per 100,000 of population, according to Okanogan County Public Health’s weekly update.
There were 183 cases of people testing positive in the last 14 days, says Public Health in the Monday, Jan. 4 COVID-19 Data report. Thirty-one of those cases took place on the last day of 2020 and the first three days of 2021. According to the data, the last day of the year alone showed 16 new cases. There were four on Jan. 1, six on Jan. 2 and five on Jan. 3.
The new data brings the total number of people testing positive for COVID-19, since testing began in March of last year, to 1792. There were no new deaths and the number of fatalities from the virus in Okanogan County remains at 32.
Of the new cases in the previous four days, Brewster and Tonasket had six each, Oroville and Malott had five each, Okanogan, four; Omak, three and Riverside and Winthrop, one each, according to last Monday’s report.
According to Public Health’s cumulative totals, Brewster has had a total of 666 people (up 13 from their previous 14-day report) who have tested positive for the virus since testing began in the county. The next highest is Omak, with 328; Tonasket, 219 (up 15); Oroville, 162 (up 18); Okanogan, 150 (up 18); Pateros, 55 (up one); Nespelem, 39; Twisp, 32 (up one); Malott, 36 (up five); Coulee Dam, 28 (up one); Winthrop, 26 (up five); Riverside,16 (up one); Loomis, nine; Carlton, nine (up one); Elmer City, eight; “unidentified,” five and Conconully and Mazama, one each.
The highest number of deaths from the virus has been in Tonasket, where 17 people, mostly from North Valley Extended Care, have passed away. The next highest number of fatalities attributed to COVID-19 is in Brewster, eight and Omak, three. The towns of Malott, Okanogan, Oroville and Pateros have had one death each.
The highest number of COVID-19 cases in Okanogan County has been found in the 20-39 age group with 642 and two deaths. The 40-59 age group has had 521 cases and one death. Next is the 0-19 age group with 291 cases and no fatalities. Those aged 60-79 have had 278 cases and 10 deaths. Age 80 and above have had 60 cases and two fatalities. There were 17 deaths listed in the “unreleased” category.
The state ended the year with a total of 237,165 positive cases of COVID-19 since testing first began and a total of 3,461 deaths in Washington, according to the state Department of Health’s (DOH) report as of 11:59 p.m. on Dec. 30.
DOH says it continues to make progress with our COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration efforts. As of their Dec. 31 update, 69,349 people in the state have received their first dose of vaccine. They expected to order second-dose allocations of the Pfizer vaccine last weekend.
DOH updated Washington’s 1A vaccine allocation guidance the previous Wednesday. They have worked closely with Gov. Inslee and his team and Dr. Umair A. Shah, the Secretary of Health, to review and update COVID-19 vaccine related matters in Washington.
Some communities in Washington state have already completed or are very near to completing vaccination of their high-risk workers in health care settings as outlined in current DOH guidance. We will be adding a second tier to 1A that allows for the vaccination of all other workers in health care settings once high-risk workers are vaccinated.