JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — State figures released Thursday show the first double-digit increase in COVID-19 cases in Alaska in more than six weeks.
Seven of the 13 cases were from the Kenai Peninsula Borough. Four were from the Anchorage area, and Juneau and the North Slope Borough each had one.
The cases reflect numbers from Wednesday. The last double-digit increase was reported April 12, when 15 cases were announced.
Dr. Anne Zink, the state’s chief medical officer, in a statement said officials closely monitor and investigate cases.
“Many of the cases came in late yesterday and are still under investigation so it’s too soon to have details about the source of transmission, but other factors such as increases in testing may also play a role,” she said.
Alaska has reported 425 total cases of COVID-19 involving residents, with 10 deaths. It also has reported 17 cases involving non-residents.
As state officials have implemented plans to reopen parts of the economy that had been restricted or closed in efforts to slow the coronavirus’ spread, they have urged Alaskans to continue taking steps aimed at guarding against the virus. Those include maintaining physical distance from others, frequently washing hands and wearing face coverings in public when maintaining distance may be difficult.
The coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death.