CBJ Stock Image

COVID-19 update in Juneau: State says case reported June 11 is community spread

June 16, 2020 – News

No new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Juneau today for either residents or nonresidents. But the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) has updated how individuals who’ve recently been reported as having COVID-19 in Juneau acquired the virus, including one by community spread.

After a thorough investigation, DHSS has not been able to identify the source of the virus for one of the two cases reported June 11, indicating community spread. The other case reported that day is being categorized as travel-related.

The state is also categorizing two older cases – one reported May 28 and another reported May 29 – as travel-related. CBJ already reported those as relating to out-of-state travel on May 29. Juneau Mayor Beth Weldon has since self-identified as being the case reported on May 28.

Two cases, reported on June 7 and June 8, are still under investigation. Juneau has had 37 cumulative resident cases; two are active, 35 have recovered.

Regarding nonresident COVID-19 cases, Juneau has three – all of them are active cases. DHSS reported the most recent two cases on Saturday, June 13. Juneau’s first nonresident case, a visitor, was reported on June 10.

For nonresident cases in Alaska, the state lists five categories for why an individual is in the state: seafood industry, mining, visitors, tourism, and other. To further clarify, a visitor is typically someone who’s visiting family; tourism indicates someone who’s here as a tourist, according to the state.  Of Juneau’s two recent nonresident cases, one was listed as Tourism, one was listed at Other.

Juneau Public Health Nursing has contacted those individuals. They are in isolation and will remain so until cleared by Public Health Nursing. Like all COVID-19 cases, Public Health initiated a contact investigation and will reach out to any person who may have come into contact with them. Public Health will notify and quarantine additional people as appropriate.

As a reminder, the most effective strategy to slow the spread of COVID-19 is prevention. Please stay six feet or more away from non-family members, cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others, wash your hands frequently, and stay home when you’re sick and get tested for COVID-19 if you have even mild symptoms. Call Juneau’s COVID-19 Screening Hotline at 586-6000, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.