COVID-19 rates declining

No new deaths, hospitalizations reported for the weekend.

COVID-19 rates continue to decline, according to Monday’s report from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services. One milestone: No new hospitalizations were reported for the period of Dec. 3-5. The alert level remains high at 235.3 per 100,000 people statewide.

DHSS also reported no new deaths over the weekend.

Data summaries have gone back to a thrice-weekly reporting schedule of Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

“Weekly or monthly data is generally more helpful for understanding trends as there can be substantial day-to-day variation in daily case reporting,” according to DHSS.

Homer did see cases reported at local schools, with seven at Homer Middle School, one at Paul Banks Elementary School and three at West Homer Elementary School.

Southern Kenai Peninsula numbers, Dec. 1-8

Alert level: High

New total tests: 544 (tested through South Peninsula Hospital)

New positive tests: 18

Test positivity rate: 3%

Cumulative cases: 2,308 residents

New Emergency Room visits: 8

New hospitalizations: 3

Monoclonal antibody infusions: 11

Vaccinations: 233

Hospital employees vaccinated: 70%

Southern Kenai Peninsula cases: 228 per 100,000 or 32 actual; high level

Central Kenai Peninsula cases: 137 per 100,000 or 51 actual; high level

Eastern Kenai Peninsula cases: 157 per 100,000 or eight actual; high level

New deaths: 0

Cumulative deaths: 17 residents (nine in Homer, eight in Anchor Point)

Vaccination information: 77.4% of Homer’s population has received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and 68.2% of eligible residents have completed a full vaccination series. In Anchor Point, 49.7% have received a first dose and 46.2% are fully vaccinated. In the other Kenai Peninsula south, 24.4% have received a first dose and 22% are fully vaccinated.

School cases: Homer Middle School, 7; Paul Banks Elementary School, 1; West Homer Elementary School, 3.

State numbers, Dec. 3-5

Alert level: High, 235.3 per 100,000

New cases: 550 residents, eight nonresidents

Kenai Peninsula cases: Homer, 13; Kenai, 12; Soldotna, 8; Seward, 6; Anchor Point, 5; Nikiski, 2; Kenai Peninsula South, 1; Kenai Peninsula North, 1; Sterling, 1. Nonresident cases: Kenai, 2; Soldotna, 2; Homer, 1.

Test positivity rate: 4.84%

Cumulative cases: 147,103 residents and 5,434 nonresidents

Total hospitalizations: 3,117

Current hospitalizations: 77, six under investigation; no new hospitalizations.

Patients on ventilators: 12

Hospitalization rate: 6.6%

New deaths: 0

Cumulative deaths: 853 residents, 30 nonresidents

Vaccination information: 62% of Alaska’s eligible population has received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and 56% of eligible Alaskans have completed a full vaccination series.

Testing locations

Officials encourage anyone with symptoms to test for COVID-19, despite vaccination status.

The SPH COVID-19 testing and vaccine clinic is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

Testing is for people with symptoms, traveling, for pre-procedure screening and for exposure six days after exposure of after being at social gatherings.

SVT Health & Wellness offers testing to anyone at its three SVT Health & Wellness locations: 880 East End Road, Homer (226-2228); 72351 Milo Fritz Ave., Anchor Point (226-2238), and 206 Main Street, Seldovia (907-435-3262).

Where to get vaccinated

Following current Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations, eligible individuals may choose which vaccine they receive as a booster dose. Pfizer BioNTech, Moderna and Janssen COVID-19 vaccine booster shots are available for anyone who is six months or more after their initial series of the Pfizer or Moderna series and are age 18 and older or anyone who is at least two months after their Janssen vaccine.

Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and boosters are offered daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesdays. Janssen vaccines are offered only on Sundays and Tuesdays.

Pfizer vaccines for children ages 5-11 are available by appointment on Wednesday and Saturday.

Vaccines also are offered by appointment at Homer Medical Clinic and the SPH Family Care Clinic. For more information at the Bartlett Street clinic, talk to your doctor or call 235-0235 for additional information.

To make appointments at Homer Medical Center, call 235-8586.

To make appointments at the South Peninsula Family Care Clinic, call 235-0900. The Moderna, Pfizer and Janssen vaccines are offered.

Safeway – Homer, 90 Sterling Highway, offers clinics 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday-Friday by appointment or walk-ins. Call 226-1060 for appointments. The Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccines are offered.

Kachemak Medical Group, 4129 Bartlett Street, offers vaccines by appointment. Call 235-7000.

Ulmer’s Pharmacy, 3858 Lake Street, offers Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccines by appointment of walk-ins. Call 235-7760.

Ninilchik Clinic, 15765 Kingsley Road, Ninilchik offers Moderna and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccines by appointment and Pfizer on demand. Call 907-567-3970.

SVT Health & Wellness offers Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson/Janssen and Moderna vaccines for established medical patients of the three SVT Health & Wellness locations: 880 East End Road, Homer (226-2228); 72351 Milo Fritz Ave., Anchor Point (226-2238), and 206 Main Street, Seldovia (907-435-3262).