The Chronicle has missed recent updates on COVID-19 data in Lewis County as Lewis County Public Health & Social Services (LCPHSS) saw staffing changes that led to a delay in reporting.
LCPHSS is working to return to regular weekly updates.
For the most recent reporting period, June 10-16, according to Marylynne Kostick, epidemiologist with LCPHSS, “Things to note, cases and hospitalizations (and rates) saw a good jump, while testing at the (Lewis County) Mall was down.”
In an increase from the previous reporting week, the county saw 156 new confirmed cases of COVID-19. The week before, there were 119 new cases. Before that, 106.
That data does not include at-home tests. At the Lewis County Mall testing site over the same week, 198 people were tested.
There were 20 new hospitalizations in that time period, also an increase from the previous reporting period. The two most recent periods both saw zero new deaths from the viral disease.
Lewis County’s COVID-19 hospitalization rate of 24.9 per 100,000 residents is much higher than the state’s average of 7. At the same time, the county’s case rate of 342.7 remains lower than the state average of 457.2.
These numbers are likely due to under-testing, as was previously suggested by former LCPHSS director JP Anderson.
The more folks who are tested, the more non-hospitalized cases get factored into the rate. Similarly, the more tests administered, the more cases get reported in total.
As of this week, 57.1% of all county residents had initiated the primary vaccination series and 51.8% of all residents had completed the primary vaccination series.
There were also seven active outbreaks occurring in congregate care settings, the same as the week of June 3 to 9.
LCPHSS Interim Director Meja Handlen said the county is working hard to get back to consistent data collection and reporting on COVID-19, especially ahead of the new school year in the fall. Staff are currently working to map the spread of the virus and case loads across the entirety of the pandemic.
To find COVID-19 vaccine appointments and locations visit https://vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov/.