Juneau’s first two COVID-19 connected deaths were reported Friday, but they happened weeks ago and many miles away from the capital city.
The newly reported deaths both occurred in early May, said a Department of Health and Social Services spokesperson, and involved people who had been living out of state in separate long-term care facilities in Washington state and New Jersey.
One was a man and one was a woman. One was in their 60s and one was in their 70s, according to news release from the City and Borough of Juneau.
Both people had Juneau listed on their death certificates as their place of residence, according to CBJ, so under national standards, the cases and deaths are counted for Juneau.
Similarly, in March, the first COVID-19 death counted for the state of Alaska occurred in Washington state and involved an Alaska resident who had lived outside the state for so long that health officials said the person did not contract the illness in Alaska.
The newly reported deaths bring the number of reported COVID-19 deaths reported for Alaska to 14.
A total of three new cases, including the deaths, were reported for Juneau on Friday, and CBJ has one active case, according to the city.
The state also reported 20 new cases — three in Southeast Alaska — and 10 new cases involving nonresidents. One of the new cases involving a resident was reported for Sitka in addition to newly reported Juneau cases. No new nonresident cases were reported for Southeast on Friday.
There have been 836 total cases involving residents and 167 nonresidents, according to DHSS. Of those statewide cases, 303 are active.
Most people develop only mild symptoms due to COVID-19. Common symptoms include fever, cough, breathing trouble, sore throat, muscle pain, and loss of taste or smell. But some people, usually those with other medical complications, develop more severe symptoms, including pneumonia that can be fatal.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, DHSS and CBJ all encourage people to stay at least six feet away from people they do not live with, cover their mouths and noses with a face covering when around others and wash their hands frequently.
People with symptoms, even mild symptoms, are encouraged to get tested for COVID-19. Juneau’s COVID-19 Screening Hotline can be reached at 586-6000 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. daily.
• Contact Ben Hohenstatt at (907)308-4895 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at @BenHohenstatt.