FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nome, Alaska – Norton Sound Health Corporation identified three positive COVID-19 cases in Shaktoolik between Friday, September 10 and Sunday, September 12. Patients have been notified and are safely isolating. Each positive patient was a close contact to another positive case in their community.
There are currently 33 active cases in the region: 12 are in Unalakleet, eight are in Shaktoolik, five are in Koyuk, three are in Nome, two are in Stebbins, two are in Savoonga, one is in Brevig Mission. Village leadership in all communities has been notified.
The COVID-19 Delta Variant is the cause of nearly all active COVID-19 cases in Alaska. NSHC medical staff and state epidemiologists believe that is the same case for the Norton Sound/Bering Strait region. The variant is highly contagious, and in response, NSHC has updated its medical guidance during this time.
- Quarantine of close contacts will be returning to 14-days long for unvaccinated individuals and some vaccinated individuals, based on the community outbreak situation.
- NSHC is recommending universal masking in public indoor areas, regardless of individuals’ vaccination status, for all communities in the region.
Testing is highly encouraged in each community with an active case. People at high risk of receiving a positive test result are those who believe they are a close contact to a positive patient, have traveled in the past two weeks, are experiencing symptoms (and they should self-isolate in the meantime), work in a public setting, or are unvaccinated.
Please contact your local clinic if you would like to get tested. In Nome, the Cough and Cold Clinic is available for testing every day. It is located on the first floor of the hospital and is open to walk-ins from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday and 10 a.m.-10 p.m. on weekends. You can call the direct line to the clinic at (907) 443-3231.