Novel coronavirus

This scanning electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2 (yellow)—also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19—isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells (blue/pink) cultured in the lab.


Updated 4:59 p.m.: A new death of a state resident has been linked to COVID-19, the state Department of Health and Social Services reported Thursday.

The deceased was an Anchorage man in his 60s who had underlying health conditions, according to a health department news release. This brings the total state resident death toll to 23, four of which have been reported within the last week.

Additionally, state health officials reported 84 new resident cases, seven of which were confirmed in residents of the Fairbanks North Star Borough –– six from Fairbanks and one from elsewhere in the borough.

Three more Alaskans have become sick enough to be hospitalized, bringing the cumulative total number of hospitalizations linked to COVID-19 to 128.

Current numbers show 37 COVID-positive patients hospitalized statewide along with eight patients who are under investigation and await test results.

In the Interior, four COVID-positive patients are hospitalized, and three others are under investigation for possible cases.

Hospitalizations are grouped by economic region rather than community, municipality or borough. It remains unclear how many of those hospitalizations are at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital.

Anchorage residents made up half of the new state resident cases reported Thursday. The rest were scattered among the Northwest Arctic Borough, Wasilla, Palmer, Soldotna, Juneau, Kotzebue, Big Lake, the Bethel Census Area, Eagle River, city of Kenai, Kodiak, Unalaska, Utqiaġvik and the combined Yakutat Borough and Hoonah-Angoon Census Area.

This brings the total number of cases reported since mid-March to 2,878, about 68% of which are considered active. Cases considered to be recovered are individuals who once tested positive but no longer require isolation.

The state is reporting 36 new cases confirmed in nonresidents, 23 of which are of seafood industry workers in Seward.

Two nonresidents not linked to a particular industry have tested Fairbanks.

The other 11 nonresident cases include one visitor in Soldotna, three seafood industry workers and one visitor in Juneau, one visitor in Wasilla, one unknown individual in Anchorage and four individuals currently in unknown locations.

It remains unclear how many of these cases remain active. About 61% of the nonresident cases have been confirmed in seafood industry workers from out of state.

The state reports Alaska resident cases by place of residence. These include Alaska residents diagnosed and isolated out of state. The state records nonresident cases by place of diagnosis.

State health officials report that the past week has been Alaska's worst since the pandemic began in terms of case spikes in residents and nonresidents, citing Alaska resident cases rising 34% in the last week alone.

A total of 225,057 tests have been conducted. The average percentage of daily positive tests for the previous three days is 2.44%.

Contact staff writer Erin McGroarty at 459-7544. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMpolitics.