COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)

Two more Alaskan deaths related to COVID-19

Two more Alaskan deaths have been tied to COVID-19, bringing the total number of Alaskans whose deaths have been related to the disease to 22.

A man in his 60s from the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area was reported to have died on Sunday, the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services announced on Monday. The man had preexisting conditions.

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends,” the press release said.

Alaska Public Media reported that a Gwichyaa Zhee tribal official confirmed the death of the person from the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area was a 67-year-old Fort Yukon man. Foundation Health Partners in Fairbanks first announced the death on Sunday. Fort Yukon has been coping with an outbreak of COVID-19, with 21 positive cases out of a population of 500, Alaska Public Media previously reported.

A patient who had been treated in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta region also died on Monday, and their death was also related to COVID-19, according to a July 27 press release from the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation. That death has not been included in data from DHSS yet. The person tested positive in Bethel and was transported to Anchorage over the weekend for advanced care.

“It is with deep sadness that YKHC reports the individual died from complications related to COVID-19 while in Anchorage,” the press release from the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation said.

DHSS also announced 104 new cases of COVID-19 in Alaska, of which 98 are residents and six are nonresidents. That follows a record number of cases announced on Sunday of 231 new cases — 186 residents and 45 nonresidents. On Sunday, DHSS Commissioner Adam Crum said in a press release that “daily cases over 100 will soon diminish our hospital bed capacity.”

Monday’s information is for the reporting period of midnight to 11:59 p.m. Sunday, July 26.

Of the new Alaska resident cases, 60 are from Anchorage, four are from Palmer, three each are from Fairbanks, Eagle River Juneau, the Northwest Arctic Borough, Utqiaġvik and Wasilla, two each are from Kenai, Kotzebue and Sitka, and one each are from Chugiak, Cordova, Craig, Homer, the Kusilvak Census Area, Soldotna, the Valdez-Cordova Census Area, Willow, the Yakutat Borough/Hoonah-Angoon Census area combined and Unalaska.

The six new nonresident cases include one person in Anchorage working in the seafood industry, one from the Ketchikan Gateway Borough, and four from unidentified areas of Alaska. This brings the total number of Alaska resident cases to 2,622 and the total number of nonresident cases to 584.

Of the 98 Alaska residents, 44 are male and 54 are female. Seven are under the age of 10; 12 are aged 10-19; 25 are aged 20-29; 18 are aged 30-39; nine are aged 40-49; 13 are aged 50-59; 10 are aged 60-69; two are aged 70-79 and two are aged 80 or older.

There have been a total of 116 hospitalizations. Currently, 36 patients diagnosed with COVID are hospitalized and an additional two patients who are considered persons under investigation (PUI) for a total of 38 current COVID-related hospitalizations. COVID patients no longer requiring isolation (recovered cases) total 817. Due to an issue with importing electronic data, DHSS did not report new lab updates. On Sunday, DHSS reported a total of 207,264 tests have been conducted. The average percentage of daily positive tests for the previous three days is 1.91%.

Total statewide hospital resources include 818 inpatient beds being used, with 631 available; 86 intensive care unit beds used with 83 available, and 63 ventilators being used with 223 available. Three COVID-19 patients are on ventilators.

At South Peninsula Hospital, 5,987 total tests have been done. Of those tests, 100 are positive and 5,770 are negative, with 108 pending test results.

Reach Michael Armstrong at marmstrong@homernews.com.

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