Saturday update: Five new cases of COVID-19, plus new racial data on positives

This scanning electron micrograph shows a cell (green) heavily infected with particles of SARS-COV-2 (purple), the virus that causes COVID-19, from a patient sample. The image was captured and color-enhanced at a National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases research center in Maryland. (NIAID)

Alaska health officials are reporting that three women and two men tested positive Friday for COVID-19.

Two are from the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, one is from Anchorage and two are from the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

That brings the total to 314 Alaskans diagnosed so far. But nearly half of them, or 147 people, have recovered.

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Officials reported no new deaths or hospitalizations. And, so far, 9,655 tests have been done for the virus in the state. However, because some people have been tested more than once, it’s unclear exactly how many Alaskans have been tested for the virus.

Slightly more women than men have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in Alaska. The state has also begun reporting the race and ethnicities of people who have tested positive in the state.

About half — or more than 160 — of people who have tested positive for the virus in Alaska are white. In 85 cases, the person’s race is unknown. Nearly 9%, or about 30 people, are Asian. Just below 5%, or 14 people, are Alaska Native or American Indian.

Nationally, more than 690,000 people have tested positive for the virus. By Saturday, 35,443 people have died, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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