The number of new COVID- 19 cases per capita in Yakima County continues to increase, the state reports.

A total of 700 people per 100,000 were diagnosed with COVID-19 over the past two weeks in Yakima County, according to the state Department of Health. That’s up from 638 as of Thursday.

State DOH data is usually a few days behind local numbers.

While the increase isn’t surprising because of continuing high daily case counts, the number is the highest in the state and puts Yakima County further beyond the state’s reopening criteria of fewer than 25 cases per 100,000 over the past two weeks.

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The next highest county in the state is Franklin County with 321 people per 100,000 over the past two weeks. The state average is 52.

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Yakima County remains in Phase 1 of the state’s four-stage reopening plan, and isn’t faring well with the state’s other reopening criteria, either. About 31% of people who were tested last week for COVID-19 tested positive. It also has a high transmission rate and hospitalizations.

Yakima County had 103 new cases Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases to 5,830, and two more deaths for a total of 113.

A total of 48 people are hospitalized, with eight intubated.

The health district has been tracking COVID-19 cases since mid-March and 2,419 people have recovered.

The health district is partnering with businesses and community groups to provide thousands of free masks. Community members are urged to wear masks in public to decrease coronavirus transmission, to wash their hands and to stay home whenever possible.

The health district will hold its weekly televised briefing at 1 p.m. Wednesday. It is broadcast on the city of Yakima’s Facebook page and on Y-PAC public access on Charter cable channel 192. A broadcast in Spanish will follow.

Navigating the pandemic
(Jennifer Luxton / The Seattle Times)

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