Clark County’s reported COVID-19 activity rate increased this week as disease activity reaches levels not seen since mid-February.
The COVID-19 activity rate, which measures new cases per 100,000 population over seven days, rose from 149.6 last week to 165.7 as of Thursday, according to Clark County Public Health data.
New hospitalizations this week rose from 6.6 to 7.4 per 100,000 residents over seven days, according to Public Health.
As of Tuesday, 97.6 percent of Clark County hospital beds and 98 percent of ICU beds were occupied. Hospitals reported that 51 beds — accounting for 9.5 percent of hospital beds and 11.8 percent of ICU beds — were occupied by people with or suspected of having COVID-19.
Six new deaths from COVID-19 were reported this week. The deaths include two men in their 60s, three men in their 70s and one woman age 80 or older.
The new deaths push the total number of people who have died from COVID-19 in Clark County to 807. Deaths are added to the county’s total typically 10 to 12 days after they occur.
Public Health reported 1,100 new cases this week, with 856 confirmed by molecular testing, for 76,737 to date, and 244 using antigen testing, for 15,483. The actual number of new cases is likely higher due to unreported at-home tests, according to Clark County Public Health officials.
If you test positive for COVID-19 with an at-home test, you can call the state’s COVID-19 hotline at 1-800-525-0127 to report your positive result.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Community Levels — a data tool that determines a county’s COVID-19 risk level based on its current number of cases, hospitalizations and overall hospital occupancy — Clark County remains at low risk along with every county in Washington except for King, Snohomish and Jefferson, which are at medium risk, and Clallam, which is at high risk, making it the first county in Washington to reach high-risk status since March.
Recommendations for residents of low-risk counties include staying up to date with COVID-19 vaccines and getting tested if you have symptoms. Masks are not required in low-risk counties, though masks and social distancing are still recommended for people at high risk for serious illness. Additionally, people who are exposed to COVID-19 or who are showing symptoms are still required to follow quarantine guidelines.
If the disease activity rate and hospitalizations continue trending upward, Clark County will soon become medium risk. Masks are still not required in medium-risk counties. Masks are recommended in all indoor public settings in high-risk counties, however.
The Washington State Department of Health reported that as of May 9, 65.9 percent of Clark County residents age 5 or older were fully vaccinated against COVID-19.