There were 122 known, active COVID cases on Kodiak as of Wednesday, the Emergency Operations Center reported. This number is down by two from Tuesday’s active case count, and is a 36% decrease from the number of known active cases a week ago, according to numbers provided by the EOC.
Things have been improving on the island, but they are still bad, according to Kodiak resident Aaren Ellsworth, who has been independently analyzing Kodiak’s COVID data released by the Emergency Operations Center since the start of the pandemic.
Proportionately, there are about 682 active cases on the island per 100,000 people, Ellsworth found. By Alaska Department of Health and Social Services standards, Kodiak would be considered on high alert. However, the EOC currently has the island at a medium risk level.
A disproportionate number of COVID infections are among children who cannot be vaccinated. Between Oct. 6 and Oct. 13, 18 of the 91 new cases diagnosed on the island, or about 20% of all cases, were in children ages nine and below, Ellsworth reported.
Since schools opened in September, there have been 174 COVID diagnoses across the Kodiak Island School Borough District among students and faculty. In September, both North Star Elementary and two village schools closed for several days, KDM reported.
Superintendent Larry LeDoux is committed to keeping the schools open, he said at the Board of Education’s work session on Monday. He has the support of a medical advisory board consisting of doctors from Providence Kodiak Island Medical Center, Kodiak Area Native Association, Kodiak Community Health Clinic, the Emergency Operations Center, the U.S. Coast Guard, the public health department and school district officials, he said at the meeting.
Last week, Kodiak was ranked No. 1 for highest percentage of COVID infections per capita in the country by the New York Times. The island had since dropped to 15th on the Times’ list, as of Wednesday.
As a state, Alaska still has one of the highest proportions of COVID cases per 100,000 people in the country. However, the rate of COVID infections has been decreasing for the past two weeks, according to the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.
Hospitalizations usually trail diagnoses by two weeks, according to the incident commander at Providence. Even though the number of COVID infections on the island has been decreasing, hospitalizations are expected to increase.
In the last week, the number of active hospitalizations on the island has remained consistent at two, the EOC reported.
Since the start of the pandemic, 87 people have been hospitalized for problems associated with COVID, according to EOC data, and there have been 2,379 known cases of COVID on Kodiak since the beginning of the pandemic. Seven people in Kodiak have died because of problems associated with COVID or related symptoms.