Nine new COVID-19 cases were reported by the Kodiak Emergency Services Council on Tuesday. 

Four people who contracted the virus had recently traveled, while one person contracted it through community transmission and four through close contact with a previous positive case. 

Of the new cases, two were tested on Jan. 7, two on Jan. 8, two on Jan. 10 and three on Jan. 11. 

This brings the current case count associated with the island to 973 since the start of the pandemic, with 44 active cases. Currently, no one is hospitalized. 

To date, there have been a total number of 39 local hospitalizations and five deaths associated with COVID-19. 

Mirroring Kodiak’s declining numbers, statewide virus transmission has dropped since its peak in early December. However, the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services said in a press release on Monday that “the last week has seen a leveling off in the decline in case rates.”

Alaska is still in the high alert level of average daily case rates per 100,000 people. 

In the release, the department noted that asymptomatic spread of the virus may account for more than half of new infections, according to a new model published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

“In addition to identification and isolation of persons with symptomatic COVID-19, effective control of spread will require reducing the risk of transmission from people with infection who do not have symptoms,” said Dr. Jay Butler, the CDC’s deputy director for infectious diseases. 

“These findings suggest that measures such as wearing masks, hand hygiene, social distancing and strategic testing of people who are not ill will be foundational to slowing the spread of COVID-19 until safe and effective vaccines are available and widely used.”

On Tuesday, the DHSS reported 159 new cases of COVID-19 statewide, as well as one new death associated with the virus.

 

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