Clark County Public Health reported 17 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, a day after the county saw a 68-case jump.
Clark County has confirmed 843 cases of the disease since early March. The death toll remains at 29; the last death from the disease in Clark County was June 22. Monday’s case count includes results from the weekend.
Statewide, Washington has 32,253 confirmed cases, more than 4,000 hospitalizations and 1,320 deaths, according to the Washington Department of Health, which issued a statement Tuesday encouraging Washingtonians to limit summer travel plans to help slow the spread of the disease.
“We still want people to limit their travel,” State Health Officer Dr. Kathy Lofy said. “We have places in Washington with a lot of COVID-19 activity. If there’s a lot of cross-state travel this summer, that could spread disease around the state.”
Lofy said that, while it’s understandable that people are ready to get out and enjoy the good weather, “public health is requesting that if they do travel, that they stay closer to home.”
“If people want to travel and it’s allowed based on their phase, we don’t want people traveling across the state,” she said. “Stay local.”
As of Monday, 11 people were hospitalized for COVID-19 at Legacy Salmon Creek or PeaceHealth Southwest medical centers, meaning 3.2 percent of hospital beds in the county are occupied by coronavirus patients.
Phase 3 uncertain
Clark County is currently waiting to hear from the state on its Phase 3 application for reopening under Gov. Jay Inslee’s plan. Even with the jump in cases on Monday, the rate of new cases per 100,000 population for the last 14 days is 15.4, below the 25 cases per 100,000 that the state recommends to move into Phase 3. The county does not have a new timeline for when a Phase 3 decision could be made. A decision had been expected early this week.
Also on Monday, Vancouver-based United Grain Corp. announced it has suspended operations at its grain export terminal at the Port of Vancouver. Two employees tested positive for
COVID-19 late last week. United Grain brought in a mobile testing truck Saturday to check other employees. Those results have not been released.
Because of rising COVID-19 rates across the state, Inslee has already paused all Phase 4 applications for the time being. Phase 4 is the last stage of Washington’s COVID-19 recovery plan.