Sitka’s COVID surge has not slowed down, keeping the community on “high” alert. (Screenshot from the City of Sitka COVID hub)

Sitka health officials reported 43 new coronavirus cases over the weekend and five more hospitalizations.

According to information published to the city’s COVID dashboard on Saturday and Sunday (7-18-21),  42 of the new patients are Sitka residents ranging in age from young children to several patients in their 80s. Nearly half of the patients are in their 20s and 30s. Nine of the patients are children under 10. 

Most of them were experiencing symptoms when they received testing. Fifteen cases are “secondary” meaning they had known contact with another COVID positive patient. Several cases are tied to community spread, and two are travel related. Contact tracing is still in progress for the remainder of the cases. 

As of Sunday evening, Sitka’s active COVID case count stands at 156, and the cumulative hospitalization count jumped from 15 to 20. The city‘s COVID alert level remains high. Last week Sitka’s Emergency Operations Center recommended masking in public and social distancing, regardless of vaccination status, as long as the case count continues to surge.