Three people from the Kenai Peninsula are among 21 new deaths of COVID-19 reported by the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services in its update on Jan. 24. The peninsula residents who died were a woman aged older than 80, a man in his 60s and a woman in her 60s. DHSS did not identify whether the victims were from Census Districts of fewer than 1,000 people in the southern or northern peninsula.
The latest report of deaths did not specify when the 21 people died. As of Monday’s report, 1,039 Alaskans have died of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.
On the southern peninsula, about 10% of all positive cases since the start of the pandemic have happened in the last seven days, Public Health Nurse Lorne Carroll told the Homer City Council on Monday. The total number of positives cases for the southern peninsula now stands at 2,810.
In the latest report, 5,654 Alaskans and 105 nonresidents tested positive for COVID-19. According to testing of cases through Jan. 2, about 94% of all new positive cases have been of the highly-infectious omicron variant.
DHSS encourages Alaskans to get vaccinated and to get booster shots, noting that it is the single most important action that can be taken to protect yourself and your community.
Through Friday, Capstone Clinic, a certified contractor of Alaska DHSS, offers COVID-19 testing from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Homer Public Health Center at 195 E. Bunnell Ave. This is a drive-up testing clinic, and no appointment is necessary.
Southern Kenai Peninsula numbers, Jan. 20-26
Alert level: High
New total tests: 1,140 (tested through South Peninsula Hospital)
New positive tests: 215
Test positivity rate: 19%
New Emergency Room visits: 12
New hospitalizations: 2
Monoclonal antibody infusions: 15
Hospital staff vaccinations: 379 or 72%
Southern Kenai Peninsula cases (7-day rate, Jan. 19-25): 1,977 per 100,000 or 277 actual; high alert level
Central Kenai Peninsula cases (7-day rate, Jan. 19-25): 1,461 per 100,000 or 542 actual; high alert level
Eastern Kenai Peninsula cases (7-day rate, Jan. 19-25): 2,329 per 100,000 or 119 actual; high alert level
New deaths: 0
Cumulative deaths: 20 residents (10 in Homer, eight in Anchor Point, two in Kenai Peninsula South)
Vaccination information: 75.6% of Homer’s population has received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and 70.5% of eligible residents have completed a full vaccination series. In Anchor Point, 50.9% have received a first dose and 47.1% are fully vaccinated. In the other Kenai Peninsula south, 25% have received a first dose and 22.6% are fully vaccinated.
School cases: Chapman School, 5; Homer High School, 10; Homer Middle School, 20; Homer Flex School, 3; Fireweed Academy, 5; Paul Banks Elementary, 8; McNeil Canyon, 1; West Homer Elementary, 14; small communities (census regions less than 1,000), 5.
State numbers, Jan. 21-23
Alert level: High, 2,175.2 per 100,000
New cases: 5,654 residents, 105 nonresidents
Kenai Peninsula cases (Jan. 12-19): Homer, 199; Kenai, 229; Soldotna, 226; Seward, 119; Anchor Point, 40; Nikiski, 24; Kenai Peninsula South, 34; Kenai Peninsula North, 34; Sterling, 29; Fritz Creek, 4.
Cumulative cases: 194,176 residents and 6,840 nonresidents
Total hospitalizations: 3,400
Current hospitalizations: 139, 21 under investigation; 21 new
Patients on ventilators: 6
Hospitalization rate: 12.5
Cumulative deaths: 1,039 residents, 33 nonresidents
Vaccination information: 63.8% of Alaska’s eligible population has received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and 58.3% of eligible Alaskans have completed a full vaccination series.
Officials encourage anyone with symptoms to test for COVID-19, despite vaccination status.
Through Friday, Capstone Clinic, a certified contractor of Alaska DHSS, offers COVID-19 testing from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Homer Public Health Center at 195 E. Bunnell Ave. This is a drive-up testing clinic, and no appointment is necessary. Please stay in your car when you arrive and a testing personnel will come to you. These are Cue COVID-19 molecular tests with rapid results. Participants will receive results within 30 minutes-1 hour via COVIDsecureapp.com. Please register with COVID Secure App before arriving.
The SPH COVID-19 testing and vaccine clinic is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily at its Bartlett Street site. 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 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, 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).
Reach Sarah Knapp at email@example.com.