New infection numbers now somewhat puzzling

An Anchorage pharmacist prepares a shot of COVID-19 vaccine. (Dec. 19, 2020) Photo courtesy of Steven Cornfield/Unsplash

COVID-19 infections are still mounting in Alaska, but how many and where they are happening is getting more difficult to discern, what with more people testing at home, in some cases using free test kits that may be ordered from the federal government.

State statistics released on Monday, Feb. 7, by the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services included 3,082 new cases of the virus since Friday, Feb. 4, and 3,021 of them being Alaska residents, including five in Cordova and 12 in the Copper River Census Area. There were another 61 cases statewide reported among nonresidents.

With no requirement to report the results of self-testing for the pandemic virus it is anyone’s guess how many new active cases of the pandemic virus there were in Alaska in the first week of February.

What is certain, is a lot of people, including some who have been fully vaccinated, including a booster shot, are still getting infected, although the vaccinations offer strong assurance that those individuals have substantially milder ailments.

The overall percentage of fully and partially vaccinated residents has not varied much over the past few months. A total of 58.6% of Alaskans ages 5 and older are now fully vaccinated and another 64.1% ages 5 and older have had at least their first dose of vaccine.

Data collected by DHSS confirmed that 127 patients diagnosed with COVID-19 were hospitalized and four others considered persons under investigation were as well. Six of those hospitalized were on ventilators. Since the pandemic spread to Alaska in the early spring of 2020 there have been 3,478 people hospitalized and a total of 1,060 individuals have died of the virus.


The list of newly infected included:

  • Anchorage 951
  • Greater Wasilla Area 237
  • Fairbanks 204
  • Nome Census Area 122
  • Eagle River 120,
  • Greater Palmer Area 113
  • Juneau 103
  • Kotzebue 95
  • Bethel 76
  • Utqiagvik 66
  • Soldotna 61
  • Kodiak 60
  • Kenai 56
  • Ketchikan 53
  • North Pole 52
  • Northwest Arctic Borough 49
  • Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area 45
  • Seward 43
  • Sitka 40
  • Homer 33
  • Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area 32
  • Bethel Census Area, Chugiak, Nome 29
  • Kusilvak Census Area, North Slope Borough 27
  • Aleutians East Borough 23
  • Delta Junction 20
  • Kenai Peninsula Borough-North 15
  • Dillingham 14
  • Chevak, Unalaska 13
  • Copper River Census Area 12
  • Fairbanks North Star Borough, Sterling 11
  • Anchor Point, Dillingham Census Area, Kenai Peninsula Borough-South, Yakutat plus Hoonah-Angoon 9
  • Metlakatla, Valdez 7
  • Craig, Houston/Big Lake Area, Kodiak Island Borough 6
  • Bristol Bay plus Lake and Peninsula boroughs, Cordova, Haines, Matanuska-Susitna Borough, Nikiski, Petersburg, Unknown 5
  • Southeast Fairbanks Census Area, Willow, Wrangell 4
  • Girdwood, Healy, Ketchikan Gateway Borough, Tok 3
  • Denali Borough, Fritz Creek, Hooper Bay, Skagway 2
  • Salcha and Sutton-Alpine 1

Nonresident cases include 11 in the Aleutians east Borough related to the seafood industry, eight in Anchorage, four each in Fairbanks, Kodiak, Prudhoe Bay; two each in Eagle River, Kotzebue and Wasilla and one each at Unalaska, Juneau and Nome.

Eighteen others were under investigation in undisclosed locations.