Community News

Skagit County's COVID case rate is the higest it has ever been, according to a news release from Skagit County, with last week's case rate more than double the previous week's.

From Skagit Public Health:

Skagit has a total of 15,924 cases, which increased by 1,402 since our update last Wednesday. This is more than double what we saw last week when we reported 635 new cases.

Our current case rate is 844.8 per 100k over the last 14 days—the highest it has been thus far. Our hospitalization rate is now 17.6 per 100k over the last seven days—expecting to surpass previous record highs in the coming days. Based on projections from the state’s Data Dashboard, Skagit is expecting to surpass a case rate of 1,500.00 next week.

Skagit reports 854 total hospitalizations (increased by 26 this week), and 156 deaths (increased by 3). 

All of this data (and so much more) can be found on the state’s Data Dashboard here: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/COVID19/DataDashboard

For instructions on how to use this site: https://skagitcounty.blog/2022/01/06/want-covid-data-the-data-dashboard-has-you-covered/

In Skagit, 226,348 vaccine doses have been administered. We’re at 72.1% fully vaccinated amongst our population 12 years and older.

Booster Updates

The CDC has adjusted recommendations for when people can receive a booster shot, shortening the interval from 6 months to 5 months for the Moderna booster vaccine. Last week, the CDC made this recommendation for recipients of the Pfizer-BioNTech booster. This means that people who initially received an mRNA vaccine series – two doses of Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech – can now receive an mRNA booster shot 5 months after completing their initial series. For more information: https://bit.ly/3teChl3

Fairgrounds Update

Testing and vaccination services are provided at the Fairgrounds Mondays, Tuesday, Thursdays, and Fridays from 3pm-6pm.

Due to overwhelming demand, testing services are extremely limited at this time. If you come to the site, please be expecting longer than usual wait times. When we reach capacity, we will have to close the gate to ensure that our staff can get home at a reasonable hour. Please do not block public and private driveways along Cleveland Ave.

Testing is first-come-first-served. Testing continues to be offered only to those who live, work, or go to school in Skagit County and who are currently symptomatic or have been recently exposed to COVID-19.

For a full list of testing providers in our region, please go to: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/COVID19/TestingforCOVID19/TestingLocations#region4

We ask that people coming for a vaccine now please come to the North Gate entrance at 1409 Virginia Street. Vaccine appointments will now be walk-in, and not drive-thru.

To schedule a booster or pediatric vaccine appointment at the Fairgrounds, please go to: www.skagitcounty.net/COVIDvaccine.

Available appointments include:

BOOSTER

PEDIATRIC

Vaccine at the Public Health Office

Boosters continue to be provided at our downtown Public Health office at 700 S 2nd Street in Mount Vernon by appointment only. If coming for an appointment, please enter through the 1st floor elevator lobby. For information or to make a booster appointment, please go to: www.skagitcounty.net/COVIDvaccine.

Available appointments include:

For a full list of vaccination providers available in Skagit County, go to Vaccine Locator or call the Hotline at 1-800-525-0127.

At-home COVID-19 Testing Options

Public Health has run out of at-home testing kits. Please consider for-purchase at-home testing options, available at locations such as Walgreens, Rite Aid, Bartell Drugs, CVS, Walmart, Safeway, and Albertsons. Please know that the state is expecting to launch a new online ordering portal in the next few weeks. More to come on this soon.

If testing at home and you receive a positive test result, please call the state’s COVID-19 Hotline as soon as possible at 1–800–525–0127 or the Skagit County Public Health office at (360) 416-1500.

At present, testing demand is far exceeding availability throughout our state. If you cannot get access to testing, please refer to the CDC's Isolation and Quarantine Guidance found here: https://bit.ly/3JQLIwF

  • IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS but do not need medical care and can't get a test, you might have COVID-19 and you should isolate for at least 5 days to keep from spreading the virus to others. Monitor your symptoms.
  • IF YOU WERE EXPOSED to someone with COVID-19 and need to quarantine and are unable to get a test 5 days after your last close contact, you can leave your home after day 5 if you have not had symptoms; wear a mask for 10 days after last contact.

Hospital Capacity Update

Please do not go to local emergency departments or urgent cares for COVID-19 testing. We know finding testing can be difficult right now, and we’re trying to find ways to increase access to testing in our community. But our hospital systems are very busy and cannot provide testing to those who do not need emergency care.

Click here for a statement from Island Hospital’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Jason Hogge: https://bit.ly/3eXsIhR

COVID-19 Therapeutics information

Monoclonal antibody (mAb) therapy to prevent serious impacts from COVID-19 are extremely limited at this time. Please do not go to an emergency department expecting to receive therapy for COVID-19. 

Your health care provider can evaluate if you are at high risk for serious impacts from COVID-19 and try to link you with a provider but demand for therapy is likely to exceed health system supply and capacity to provide at this time. Please help reserve our emergency departments for those with urgent health needs that cannot be handled in primary care or urgent care. 

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