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WA health officials cautiously release ‘good news’ about COVID-19



Health officials were vigilant on Wednesday when they talked about how the state’s response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Health Secretary John Wiesman said at the weekly briefings led by leaders of the state’s COVID-19 response: “In short, there’s good news. Obviously we have a lot of work left to do, but we’re showing some success in our efforts, such as increasing the use of veils and seeing a dramatic decrease in the number of new cases every day. “

State Health Officer Dr Kathy Lofy said: “We continue to see some positive signs in our data.”

“Over the past few weeks, we are starting to see clearly that the number of cases detected in Washington has decreased,”

; Lofy said.

It takes a few weeks, Lofy said: “to make sure you’re confident in what you’re seeing. And we’re starting to feel more confident that the trend we’re seeing is real. “

It seems activity may have peaked in mid-July, she said.

Showing another graph, Lofy said the proportion of emergency people with a COVID-like illness appeared to have peaked at the end of March during the first pandemic and in the recent one appeared to have peaked in mid-month. 7.

She also talked about the number of hospitalizations for confirmed cases of COVID-19.

“It looks like by the end of July we are starting to see this data diminishing,” she said.

“We still have a lot of activity left,” she warned. So while we are starting to see some positive signs, activity is still high, and as you know, so high that most of our schools are planning to start the next school year. Distance learning model. “

On Tuesday, the state reported 504 new cases and 19 deaths, bringing Washington to 64,151 and 1,716 deaths.

“It is extremely important that we continue to take all of the public health measures we mentioned to further reduce COVID activity in our state,” says Lofy.

That means masks, away from society and restrict interaction with others.

“Less interaction, shorter is really what we’re trying to do,” she said.

She notes that at the beginning of June, about 4 or 5 deaths were reported per day, and the most recent data showed about 10 deaths reported per day.

“I believe we haven’t seen volatility in this chart yet, because death is our slowest indicator,” she said.

She said, there are a lot of diseases in people aged 0 to 39 this summer.

It looks like that dropped around mid-July, but she says there was still an increase at that time in people over 40.

“I think this is just another example of the fact that we are all connected within our community,” she warned. “So, if we see COVID in a certain community, a certain age group, then it is very likely that if the disease spreads and breaks out more and more, it will potentially spread to other age groups.” .

Lofy said the number of births in Eastern Washington was recently lower than 1 for the first time, which means “the boom is decreasing in size”.

Western Washington, she said, is a little taller.

Wiesman also talked about the change in the state’s methodology to report the test.

So far: “if someone tests negative multiple times, we only report their first negative test,” he said.

He went on to say: “As the disease progressed and re-testing increased, we decided to change the way our data were processed and reported all tests received in the test console. and use this data to calculate both daily test volume and positive rate. “

They will start reporting all new negative tests, he said.

It will be a bit before that is displayed on the state’s COVID-19 data dashboard.

“It would take us a week or so to do this job…” he said. “… we won’t update these data until we migrate to the new system and we’ll make sure to make a note of it on our dashboard.”

“Data issues” have not affected the state’s response to the pandemic, he said.

“We’ve got all the raw data coming in over time,” said Wiesman.

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Alexis Krell covers local, state and federal court cases that affect Pierce County. She began covering the courts in 2016. Before that, she wrote about crime and breaking news for nearly four years as a night reporter for The News Tribune.




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