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As the number of incidents surges, King County officials warn of potential Covid-19 “explosions” during the holidays




Local health officials say they are particularly concerned about the pandemic situation in King County as the new state-wide social distance restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus come into effect.

Last week, the county had a record high number of new cases of Covid-19, with an average of 581 new cases reported daily.

As of Thursday, King County reported more than 37,000 confirmed cases of the disease since the outbreak was declared in the area in late February, killing about 840 people. These incidents are concentrated in the South King County community.

Testing for Covid-19 has increased by 22% since October, and the proportion of positive cases has more than tripled since September. Most of the new Covid cases in King County (about 70%) are people between the ages of 20 and 60.

“This reinforces the fact that our outbreaks continue to grow,” said Dr. Jeff Duchin, a public health officer, in Seattle and King County on Friday. “And as the scale of the outbreak grows, so does the magnitude of its growth and the impact of that growth.”

Relation: This is why Washington’s Covid-19 rate is rising

Duchin added that hospitalizations are also increasing at a rate of concern, citing about 140 Covid-related hospitalizations this week, compared to about 50 per week in the week before November. ..

The regional and national pandemic situation has become more and more alarming, especially as the holiday season begins and the temptation to interact indoors grows.

Washington state health officials have reiterated concerns that the healthcare system could quickly become overloaded if Covid’s cases continue this rapidly exploding trajectory.

Duchin also pointed out an overloaded contact tracing and outbreak investigation system. This is a problem that can be exacerbated by holiday gatherings, and authorities are asking people to limit themselves to members of their home.

Relation: WACovid-19 hits record highs as holidays approach

“It’s important for everyone to understand that the restrictions on restaurants, taverns and indoor gyms alone are not enough to turn this outbreak around,” he said. “When people travel or gather for Thanksgiving celebrations or other gatherings, a Covid-19 explosion can cause human suffering that has never been experienced in modern times.”

Health experts encourage people to skip Thanksgiving celebrations between households altogether, but if attending, encourage no more than five people from outside a particular household to move the festival outdoors. I’m giving advice.

In addition, they say that people planning to gather across households should start quarantine by Thursday (yesterday) and be tested by Covid two days before Thanksgiving.

“I have time to change course, but I’m already on this road, so I’m not comfortable,” Duchin said.

He added that public health officials will now prioritize contact tracing for people at high risk for Covid-19 complications and focus resources on the collective environment of high-risk populations.

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