COVID-19 disease transmission exceedingly high in Washington: three-day cumulative total for cases is over 6,000

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Health’s (DOH) data report for today includes a backlog of cases. So, while we are reporting 6,277 new cases today, that number represents roughly three days’ worth of cases.

The message from health officials with the Washington State Department of Health has not changed: disease transmission is widespread throughout Washington state and we are at the highest risk we have been at throughout the entire pandemic. Case counts, hospitalizations, and other metrics are all increasing at this time. Washingtonians need to wear their face coverings, watch their distance by staying at least 6 feet away from persons not living in their household, and wash their hands. Do not have friends and other family inside your home for social gatherings. Social gatherings of up to 5 people outside, distanced, and wearing a face covering at all times is a safer way to connect with others. Safest is through telephone or video chats.

We are in a very dangerous time of this pandemic—health care workers, other essential workers, our elders, persons with chronic diseases, and our family and friends all need your help staying safe.

Data:

The surge in cases and testing over the last week created a backlog in the DOH data systems as reported Saturday. That backlog has been cleared as of today. To ensure we are getting positive tests in a timely fashion, DOH worked with laboratories to delay their reporting to us of the negative test results. Therefore, DOH will not be reporting daily negative test or total tests data or percent positivity at least through Monday, Nov. 30th. For the most current picture of recent trends, we recommend consulting the DOH dashboard’s epidemiologic curve tab.

“The epidemiologic curve tells the most crucial part of the story, which is that our disease transmission is skyrocketing,” says State Health Officer Kathy Lofy. “We have grave concerns about what will happen in the coming weeks if people gather at Thanksgiving, or any other time in the near future, and spread COVID-19 to their friends and loved ones.”

“COVID-19 activity is increasing throughout Washington state, leading to more cases, straining the testing sites and hospital capacity. It is more critical than ever for Washingtonians to actively help reduce the spread of this deadly virus,” says Secretary of Health John Wiesman. “Everyone should stay home as much as possible, and not congregate with people outside their immediate households, especially during the upcoming holiday. It’s important to wear face coverings when you do go out, and to seek testing if you develop symptoms or if you’ve been exposed to someone who has, or is suspected to have, COVID-19.”

A note: DOH will not be doing regular data reporting on Thursday, Nov. 26 (Thanksgiving). Reporting will resume on Nov. 27.

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