DHSS announces seven new cases of COVID-19 in Alaska

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) — The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services announced on Saturday, March 21st that there are seven new cases of COVID-19.

That brings the total number of cases in Alaska to at least 21.

The cases are in five Alaskan communities, Anchorage (1), Fairbanks (1), Ketchikan (3), Sterling (1) and Soldotna (1).

According to the press release from the DHSS, the Soldotna and Anchorage cases were both travel-related with travel to the Lower 48. All other cases were non-travel related and are currently being investigated. All cases were in adults and none were hospitalized.

“All of the new cases are isolating themselves at home and their close contacts are being asked to self-quarantine for 14 days and monitor for symptoms,” said Alaska’s State Epidemiologist, Dr. Joe McLaughlin. “Our thoughts go out to these people, their families and their communities. All of these individuals are being conscientious and cooperating fully with public health officials.”

McLaughlin went on to say that the biggest challenge in the containment effort is when people continue to interact with others when they have symptoms. He urged Alaskans who have even mild symptoms of a respiratory infection, to immediately go home and stay away from others until those symptoms subside.

This is a developing story.

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