1,251 new COVID-19 cases reported in Alaska, breaking daily record

a medical professional swabs a driver's nostril
Jose Urrutia gets a nostril swab on Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2021, afternoon at the Loussac Library, one of Anchorage’s free COVID-19 testing sites. (Jeff Chen/Alaska Public Media)

Alaska broke its daily COVID-19 record on Wednesday, reporting 1,251 new cases. The state’s case rate continues to be the highest in the nation, according to The New York Times.

Alaska’s previous highest daily tally was 1,095 cases, reported a week ago.

Wednesday’s case count pushed Alaska’s total resident cases during the pandemic past 100,000. 

State epidemiologist Dr. Joe McLaughlin said in a video town hall today that Alaska’s COVID rate is worrying. 

“We’re just shy of 3 times the national rate in respect to COVID-19 cases. This is a call to action for all Alaskans. We need everyone to rally together to get vaccinated and to mask up,” he said.

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The state also reported another resident death on Wednesday and the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 remains at near record levels. 

Health officials say a data entry backlog has made inconsistent daily reports, but the state has experienced a 44% increase in cases over the last two weeks. And the 9.1% testing positivity rate over the past seven days indicates that there are likely cases that aren’t being detected.

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Lex Treinen is covering the state Legislature for Alaska Public Media. Reach him at ltreinen@gmail.com.

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