Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy signed a proclamation ending the State's Emergency Declaration last week and Department of Health and Social Services Commissioner Adam Crum signed a Public Health Order, directing DHSS to continue taking all necessary actions to address the COVID-19 pandemic including leading Alaska’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts.
According to Alaska DHSS Public Health Nurse Lorne Carroll, as of Monday, 50% of Alaskans age 16 and older have received at least their first vaccine dose, and 43.8% of Alaskans 16 and older have been fully vaccinated. He stresses that the higher the vaccination rate, the more protected community members are from COVID-19.
On the Kenai Peninsula, State data show 37.8% of residents age 16 and older are fully vaccinated. On the Southern Kenai Peninsula, 36% of the total population is fully vaccinated. That is 5,374 people and 10,837 total doses. The Northern Southeast region and Juneau Region have the highest percentage of vaccinated residents at 63.7% and 62% fully vaccinated, respectively.
In Alaska, zero deaths due to COVID were reported in the last three days. So far, 341 Alaskan residents have died of COVID. Nurse Carroll said having zero deaths for several days is a clear sign of progress. The COVID-19 case rate for the state is 20 or 21 per 100,000. On the Kenai Peninsula, the rate is currently 16.36 per 100,000. Juneau has what the state considers a low case rate at 7.19 per 100,000.
Nurse Carroll says, “Choosing to get vaccinated is the single most important action you can take to protect yourself and your community and to reopen our economy."
This Friday, May 7 there is a pop up vaccine clinic at the Homer Harbor Boat House Pavilion from 10am to 2pm. They'll have both the two-dose Pfizer which is approved for people ages 16 and older and the single-dose Janssen. South Peninsula Hospital spokesperson Derotha Ferraro says the pop up clinic is for anyone who wants a vaccine. There will be a nurse on site to answer any COVID related questions.
Free vaccines are also available seven days a week at the Covid Clinic at 4201 Bartlett Street. Walk-ins are welcome from noon to 5:00 p.m., or by appointment from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Both Pfizer and Janssen vaccine are available. The clinic is offering first and second doses, even if the first dose was administered elsewhere. For information about COVID vaccine and tests, go to: www.sphosp.org.
Also, Safeway Pharmacy is showing vaccine appointments available on their website, safeway.com.