Hospitalizations rise, as nearly 1,400 infections reported over the weekend

Red billowy objexxt with blue rods latching onto them
A scanning electron micrograph of a cell (blue) heavily infected with particles of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Image captured from a patient sample at a federal lab in Maryland. (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)

Alaska reported its second-highest daily COVID-19 case count on Sunday with 654 new cases reported, pushing weekend case total to 1,384.

The number of Alaskans hospitalized with COVID-19 also continues to climb. The state now has 141 people hospitalized with or suspected of having COVID. 

On Saturday, Alaska set a single-day record of new COVID-19 cases with 742 infections reported. Those case count numbers represent up to a 50% underestimate of the true count since state health officials say they don’t have enough personnel to process all of the data. 

Of the state’s ICU beds, 105 are currently in use. Hospital officials say that number can vary significantly on a daily basis, but a survey by Alaska Public Media and KTOO found that many of the state’s hospitals have struggled with staffing shortages and are preparing for the possibility of patient overloads. 

Lex Treinen is covering the state Legislature for Alaska Public Media. Reach him at

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