Alaska’s record-setting COVID-19 surge continues over weekend

A brown blob microscopic
A scanning electron micrograph shows a cell heavily infected with particles of SARS-COV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)

Alaska again broke the daily record of COVID-19 cases on Saturday as the state reported 933 new cases. 

Another 756 cases were added on Sunday. That number would have been a daily record just a few days ago. 

While Anchorage continues to report the highest number of cases, the case numbers in the state’s largest city have started to drop slightly in recent weeks, according to state data.

RELATED: Anchorage mayor tests positive for COVID-19

Meanwhile, the Mat-Su Borough has averaged more than 200 daily cases over the last ten days. Part of the borough’s high case numbers is a result of correcting an underreporting mistake by a testing lab that resulted in additional cases being added over the last week. But the area’s high numbers suggest that community transmission in the area — which has implemented few COVID restrictions — continues to grow.

The only region in the state with a higher rate of transmission is the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. Many villages in that region are on lockdown. 

According to the New York Times, Alaska is fifth in a ranking of the worst states for COVID-19 cases per capita. 

The number of Alaskans hospitalized with confirmed cases of COVID-19 is now 153, plus 11 who are suspected of having the disease, according to the state’s coronavirus dashboard. Statewide, that leaves 32 available ICU beds. The Mat-Su Borough reported that all of its intensive-case beds are full.

This story has been updated to include a more recent ranking of Alaska’s COVID-19 statistics. It is now the fifth-worst state in the country for new coronavirus cases per capita, not the seventh-worst.

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

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