Alaska Daily COVID-19 Count 1 (6/1-9/20)

[NOTE:  These updates continue at a new tab: Alaska Daily COVID-19 Count #2.  The tab is under the orange Blog banner on top. But table keeps updating here as well as there.]

This began as a way to track the daily Alaska COVID-19 statistics, because the State site replaced the old data with the current data.  There was no way to see what had happened on previous days, to figure out trends.  I started with daily blog posts in early March which you can see here.  But that got cumbersome, so I set up a tab above.  There are now two tabs - June 1- Sept 30 and #2 starting Oct 1.  Another way to see these daily posts is just look at the Blog Archives in the right hand column and look under March, April, and May 2020.  That might be easier.]

Eventually the State got more sophisticated software and the historical numbers were available.  But for my own interest and to offer a table where people could easily see the historical numbers, I have continued the chart.  As new kinds of numbers were available I made some changes, explained in the chart headings.  

At this point (September 11, 2020) I'd point out that there are often discrepancies in the 'new resident case' numbers  between what I post and what the State posts.  I think that should be explained.

My new resident case numbers =  today total - yesterday total.  But the State often make adjustments based on corrections to the old data they have.  Perhaps there was a new case reported for three days ago, or a new resident case that turns out to be a non-resident case.  So I report those discrepancies this way:  my total/State total  (93/89 is what I reported today.  
Less common are discrepancies in the non-resident totals.  To get the total (resident+non-resident) new cases, I add MY count of new resident and new non-resident cases.  

So I'm still keeping an historical record of what the State posts daily. And I calculate my new case numbers based on the difference between what the State reported yesterday and today.  I figure in the end things pretty much even out.  

Here's a link to the main State Dashboard I use, where there's lots of other information, including location of each new case.  

I also write a daily short highlight of each day's numbers below the chart, which keeps getting longer and longer.  My original comments here, I've preserved at the very bottom of this page.  

Wednesday, September 30, 2020 - Tomorrow I'll do these updates on a new page - Alaska COVID-19 Count 2 -just because this page is getting really long after 6 months.  

We continue to bumble along at a steady daily increase in cases - 103/105 today.  We aren't spiking, but we aren't declining either.  Our number of active cases is going down steadily the four days.  But this isn't real.  It's just that the State is catching up with people who have recovered.  Today, for instance, they added 192 new recoveries.  Those didn't all happen yesterday.  I'm guessing they just didn't track recoveries as closely - and it's harder to do.  But now that they are being more aggressive about that, the active cases are dropping.  But it was only 21 days ago that we posted 3717 active cases.  I'm guessing that most people are being conscientious about limiting contact and wearing masks.  But a enough folks are providing their bodies to the virus to keep it spreading.  
There were just under 6200 new tests - on the high side - but the test positivity rate went up to 2.87.  We've had that number under two frequently and we've gotten into the three range a few times.
The Reproductive Rate is at 1.l.  That's a number we want UNDER 1.0.  But it's still a decent number.  

Tuesday, September 29, 2020 - No new deaths, two new hospitalizations.  124/118 new resident cases, one new non-res case.  More mass updating of recoveries - 472 new today - which drops the active cases to 3800, the lowest since Sept 9.  But this just means that the active case numbers have been inflated because they weren't keeping up with the recovered folks.  
About 6300 new tests.  Test positivity at 2.67.  Reproductive level 1.08.  As I've pointed out before both those last two numbers are seven or more day averages and change daily.  They're rough estimates.  But we're still getting more than a hundred new cases a day.  We are fairly steady, but it's too high a number.  

Monday, September 28, 2020 - No new deaths, three new hospitalizations.  116/115 new resident cases, 2 new non-resident cases.  The catching up with recovered cases continues.  Today the most in a single day - 220 - were posted.  This lowered the resident active cases to 4148, the lowest number in two weeks.
Just about 1900 tests and test positivity moved up to 2.93 (percent of tests that were positive).  Reproductive rate also climbed to 1.06.  

Sunday, September, 27, 2020 - Thought I put this up this morning.  Also saw I had the dates wrong the last couple of days.  Sorry. I fixed them.
There were four new deaths today.  Going back to Thursday, that makes 11 COVID deaths in four days - the biggest cluster since this started. 
There are some inconsistencies I can't explain.  With 114/111 new resident cases and three recoveries reported, active cases should have gone up.  But they dropped by 138 cases to 4252.  
And the number of tests didn't change, nor did the test positivity.  So something's not quite right.  I would note that yesterday I reported (based on the state's total number of cases Saturday and Friday) three fewer cases than the state.  Today, we seem to have caught up with that as I reported three more than the state.  

Saturday, September 26, 2020 - No new deaths, but yesterday there was another death added to the State dashboard at 4:30pm.  I've corrected the chart.
3 new hospitalizations.  
Another big flood of recoveries (187).  My guess is that they've made an effort to track down the people who were positive and that these recoveries really happened a while ago.  Not counting them inflated the active cases numbers.  Today active cases is down again, to 4350.  September 17 was
the last time we were that low (4306).
About 1500 new tests with test positivity at 2.43.  It's creeping up.
Reproductive rate is 1.02.  This number is an estimate.  The site says:
"Current Rt estimate as of 2020-09-25: 1.01 (0.91 - 1.12)
Average Rt over past 14 days: 1.019"
1 is supposed to mean, one other person infected for each new case.  That's low and good, if it's true.  
But we are back to adding over 100 new cases a day after dipping below 50 a few days.  Nationally, they're talking about the Labor Day impact.  Perhaps that's what is happening.

Friday, September 25, 2020 - 5 new deaths. That's the highest number of deaths reported on a single day.  August 25 we had four.  Sept 1 and 5 we had two.  
To get a sense of time, here's how long it's taken to add ten deaths
  • 0 - 10 deaths  56 days (March 3 - when I started keeping track - to May 6
  • 10-20 death - 46 days 
  • 20-30 deaths -28 days
  • 30-40 deaths - 13 days
  • 40-50 deaths - 23 days
So we've slowed down a bit - this was only the second fastest rate of increase

We had two new hospitalizations and 122/127 new resident cases.  Another big jump in recoveries  - 211 - as they seem to be tracking down those on the active list.  This resulted in a 95 person drop in the active cases list.  Down to 4424, the lowest since September 18.  But it really appears that tracking down the recovered cases has been either a lower priority or more difficult so tying the numbers to specific days doesn't see accurate.  The cumulative numbers will eventually be reasonably close I suspect. (Death numbers, on the other hand, are probably more closer to the actual dates of death.)

About 4100 tests yesterday with a 2.31 test positivity rate.  Reproductive rate is listed as 1.  

The numbers were posted after 12pm again today.  Closer to 1:30 I'd guess, but they didn't update the date and time on the dashboard.  

Thursday, September 24, 2020 - I stopped checking regularly at 2:30pm.  It says the numbers were posted at 3:15pm.  An Anchorage Daily News article says the State is getting a little behind on some numbers - like recoveries.  It must we tiring six months in, seven days a week.  
Today they listed 70 more recoveries.  But there were 128 new cases, one new death, and 5 new hospitalization.  Thus despite the catch up flurry of recoveries, active cases went up by 37 to 4519, still below the high earlier this week, of 4634.
Just over 4000 new tests and a test positivity level of 2.24 (remember that's a seven day rolling average.)  Test positivity 2.24.  
Since last Friday, 2 people in Alaska died of COVID-19. In that same time one man and one alpaca were killed by bears.  

Wednesday, September 23, 2020 - It's after 1pm and the State has yet to update the website.  Check back later.  It shouldn't be too long.  Their target deadline is 12pm.
3:26pm.  State posted at 2:40pm today. Seems like they're still catching up on folks who can now be said to be recovered because they added another 62 today after yesterday's 188 new recoveries.  These additional recoveries, along with 54/56 new cases helped lower the total active cases again.  This time only by eight, to 4482.  But fewer active cases is always a good sign.
Since Saturday we've had fewer than 100 new cases each day.  
No new deaths. 1 new hospitalization.  about 2500 new tests with a 2.28 test positivity level.
The Reproductive Number was .96.  That's the median number.  It's under 1 which means that each new case has infected less than one other person.  I'm not quite sure how that's determined.  But it's a good sign.  

Tuesday, September 22, 2020 - It appears that State caught up with a bunch of recovery reports.  There were 188 new recoveries reported.  Lately there's been just a few if any each day.  So that means for the first time in a while we had a drop, a significant drop, in active cases.  From 4634 yesterday to 4490 today.  That means that one of the things I was most concerned about - the ever increasing number of active cases - was inaccurate because the State wasn't keeping an accurate daily count of recoveries.  This is not a criticism, just an observation.  Tracking recoveries can't be easy.  
The number of new cases was down to 44/46.  
There were no new deaths, and there was one new hospitalization.
There were about 2500 new tests and the test positivity level was 2.28.
And the Reproductive Number was 1.0.  

Monday, September 21, 2020 - No new deaths, 3 new hospitalizations (total now 265, currently in a hospital 44).  70 new resident cases, one new non-resident.  Only one recorded recovery.  Total active cases now, a new high yet again, is 4634.  We've added 630 active cases in the last nine days.
1700 new tests, test positivity is 2.28. 
Test reproductive level is 1.0.  

Sunday, September 20, 2020 - Today is 10/20/2020 for people who like numbers.  
No new deaths. One new hospitalization.  93/94 new resident cases. No new non-res cases.  No recoveries reported.  That brings our total resident active cases to another new high of 4565.  That's how many Alaskan residents  officially have tested positive for  COVID-19 and actively are infected right now.  It doesn't include the 719 official active non-resident cases.  Nor does it include who have the virus right now but haven't been identified through testing.  That means there are over 5000 people known to have COVID-19 right now.  
Hopefully, they are all quarantined.  But that still leaves all the people who have not been identified out there.  We know they're there because every day we get about 50-100 new people identified.  Still, the active case number is .007 percent of the Alaska population.  The odds of breathing in COVID-19 virus is pretty low in Alaska.  And if you wear your mask and stay back from folks, the odds go down further.  
There were 4100 new tests with a test positivity rating of 2.31.  That means for every 100 people who got tested 2.31 were positive. (Well, just imagine every third of those .31s adding up into a whole person.)

Saturday, September 19, 2020 - No new deaths.  Four more new hospitalizations.  85/86 new cases, bringing active cases to 4472. Yet another new high.  
4500 new tests.  Test positivity (% of positive results) is 2.24.  Reproductive Level mean - a number I only found in the data yesterday is .97.  Actually, I saw the range yesterday, but if you play with the cursor you can also see the mean.  Yesterday's was .98.  In very basic terms under 1 means it should slow down.  Over 1 means it will spread.  We've been right on the edge of one a while, but our active numbers go up steadily.  

Friday, September 18, 2020 - One new death.  Four new hospitalizations.  111/108 new cases.
We hit 4400 active cases.  That means we added 400 ACTIVE cases in six days. (That's only resident cases.  There are 720 non-resident active cases.)  That means that new cases outpace recovered cases and deaths, significantly.  At that rate we'll have 4000 more active cases in about ten weeks. 
There were about 2400 tests reported yesterday and test positivity is 2.21.  
Another number reported in the Anchorage Daily News today was Reproductive Level. If that number is over 1.0, it means the virus will spread faster.  I looked around on the State's dashboard to find where they report that.  The number is reported as a range - .85(low) to 1.08 (high).  The ADN also said the State has changed perditions and now expects wider spread of the virus.  These numbers are confusing because they are presented on a seven day average and the numbers for each day change because of the averaging.  
A federal site says this about Reproductive Rate:
"My state has so few cases, why is Rt so bad?
Even if there is only one person sick and that one person infects six people, Rt will be 6.0. So to evaluate how bad a situation is for a given state, you need to understand both Rt, but also the absolute number of cases. A high Rt is manageable in the very short run as long as there are not many people sick to begin with. Smaller states like Vermont or Alaska often see this issue."

We're learning more about the virus daily.  At first scientists had little data to go on, but as time goes by they learn more and more.  It seems now there is less concern about touching surfaces and more evidence that wearing masks is the best protection.  But washing hands is still recommended.

Doctors have learned a lot about treating patients with COVID-19 and so they are better able to prevent deaths.  

Thursday, September 17, 2020 - [State didn't post until after 1pm today.  Test numbers and positivity were not updated yet.] I checked again before posting and the new tests are now up.  There were just about 7300 new tests (a larger than normal number) and test positivity is listed as 2.37.  
No new deaths, 3 new hospitalizations.
105/109 new resident cases and active cases went up by 104, the biggest jump in a week.  My new case numbers are simply = today's total - yesterday's total.  The State puts up the new number of total cases AND the number of new cases.  Differences usually seem to mean they've adjusted something.  Today we were off in the non-resident new cases too.  They had four new non-resident cases to my one.
The last two days we've had under 50 new resident cases.  Now we're back up over 100.  Not good.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020 - Total deaths unchanged at 44.  Four new hospitalizations.  
49/50 new resident cases.  Total active cases keeps rising - up to 4202.  It's good we have two days in a row under 50 new cases.  But we need to get lower still.  
About 1400 new tests.  Test positivity is up to 2.45, the highest level in a month.  The Anchorage Daily News quotes an Ami Conant today,
 “I don’t wear a mask, I don’t believe this is something our immune systems can’t handle on its own,” she said. “We eat healthy, we take care of our bodies and our immune systems will fight off the rest.”
With enough allies like her, the virus will keep finding hosts well into the end of next year.  

Tuesday, September 15, 2020 - Deaths and hospitalizations have not changed since Sunday - 44 and 246.  New cases resident cases were up 42, the lowest since last Tuesday's 35.  Still, the active cases (resident) went up 17 to another new high of 4158.  We get new highs on that number just about every day now.  
About 3700 tests and 2.11 test positivity.  Mask up.  

Monday, September 14, 2020 - No new deaths, no new hospitalizations, no new recoveries.  But 75 new resident case raising the total active cases to 4141.  
2200 new tests, test positivity up to 2.04.  

Sunday, September 13, 2020 - No new deaths, one new hospitalization, no new recoveries reported.  While new cases were fewer than the previous couple of days - 62 (an no new non-resident cases), it still added 62 people to the active case list which is now at 4066.  I won't start feeling better until that number starts going down steadily.  There were about 1500 tests and test positivity was 1.96. We're doing sort of ok.  It took almost 6 weeks to double our active cases (2069 on July 31 to 4004 yesterday),  but there's a sharp upward curve still.  

Saturday, September 12, 2020
One more new death.
One more new hospitalization.
103/101 new resident cases.
We topped 4000 active cases for the first time - 4004.
There were over 4000 tests and test positivity dipped to 1.73.  
We're not winning this.  

Friday, September 11, 2020 - On 9/11 the total non-resident cases is 911.  Just a quirk, no dark meaning.  
But there is one new death and one new hospitalization.
93/89 new resident cases, but only 4 recoveries, bringing the active resident cases to 3917, yet another all time high.  
There were about 1500 new tests and test positivity is down a bit to 1.89.   The test positivity rate has been the most hopeful number in these statistics staying in the low 2 to high 1 range.  

Thursday, September 10, 2020 - We had 35 new cases Tuesday.  63 yesterday. And today we added 114/111.  This is not a good trend.  We added 113 new active cases for a total of 3830, another new high.  This happens daily.  A couple more days and we'll have over 4000 active cases.
No new deaths, four new hospitalizations.  1140 new tests.  Despite the low number of tests and the increased number of new cases, the seven day average test positivity rate went down below 2 again to 1.99.  

Wednesday, September 9, 2020 - Back up to 63/65 new cases. No new recoveries.  Total active new high (like every day) of 3717.  An oddity:  there were only 281 tests reported.  Sounds like a mistake or an adjustment.  Test positivity 2.25.  This isn't working folks.  We added 63 new active cases.  Active cases just keep going up.  We aren't exploding, but we are slowly adding up new cases.  

Tuesday, September 8, 2020 - Another good report, mostly.  No new deaths.  One new hospitalization.  New resident cases = 35.  No new non-resident cases reported.  Active resident cases went up only 19 to 3654.  That's still the highest ever, but the increases are shrinking.  
Just over 3000 tests.  I'm still having trouble figuring out the almost half a point jump in the seven day average test positivity rate of 2.26.  If it's a seven day average and the number has been below 2 for more than seven days AND today's increase was lower than most days, how does the positivity go up that much?  I'll have to look into that.  

Monday, September 7, 2020 - No new deaths. 2 new hospitalizations.  Only 33 new cases but only one new recovery.  Total active went up once again, but only by 34, still a new high of 3635.  This is positive, but I'm guessing it could be related to Labor Day Weekend.  There were only 1500 tests.  Test positivity down slightly to 1.84.  Let's hope tomorrow's numbers continue to have fewer new cases than we've been having.  

Sunday, September 6, 2020 - No new deaths or hospitalizations.  Big difference between my count and the state's for new cases - I see 86, they say 97.  Only 3 recoveries, and we hit 3601 active cases.  Barely over 2000 new tests.  Test positivity is up to 1.97.  We've got to get these numbers down.  

Saturday, September 5, 2020 - 93/96 new resident cases.  If you think that's not bad compared to other states, we went a long time with 0-5 new cases a day.  
And 2 new deaths - we're at 42 total deaths.  
There have been a total 5679 resident cases.  
No new hospitalizations.  
Just under 3000 new tests.  Test positivity 1.85.  
There are 3518 active cases, once again, a new high.  And these are only the people who have been tested and identified.  

Friday, September 4, 2020 - 120/121 new cases, 3450 total active cases.  We're back up over 100 a day for two days now.  Highest level of active cases.  No new deaths, five new hospitalizations.  4001 new tests.  Test positivity is 1.82.  Not happy about the direction things are going.  This is not how to stop the virus.  Back from hike in Denali National Park just now and disheartening the number of people walking around the visitor center (inside is closed) without masks.  

Thursday, September 3, 2020 - 102 new cases. 3336 total active cases.  Moving in the wrong direction still. One new death, two new hospitalizations.  About 1000 new tests, test positivity is 1.88.  

Wednesday, September 2, 2020 - Wifi at Denali visitor center.  No new deaths, five new hospitalizations.  66 new cases.  3240 active cases.  Once again, a new high.  About 2500 tests, and test positivity is 1.96.  

Tuesday, SEPTEMBER 1, 2020 - Only 35 new resident cases.  BUT 2 new deaths!  And we're now over 3200 active cases: 3208.  There were 374,255 tests listed today.  That's 26,000 + tests.  I think it just reflects the State adjusting how they report the tests and this is the adjustment day.  Test positivity is 1.81.   [Note:  going camping for a few days while work is being done in our house. Not sure what my wifi access will be.  You can check the State site if I can't report here.]

Monday, August 30, 2020 - No new deaths.  4 new resident hospitalizations.  37 new resident and 2 new non-resident cases.  Just under 2000 new tests.  Test positivity dipped slightly to 1.82.
BUT, new cases still outpaced recoveries and the State lists 3182 active cases.  That's 19 higher than our previous high of 3163 on August 20.  People submit to serious invasions of privacy to get on a plane, but get crazy over wearing a mask.  Yet someone pointed out yesterday that the equivalent of hundreds of crashed 747s deaths have been taking place in the US.  

Sunday, August 30, 2020 - Active cases increased by 15 to 3150.  Still below our high of 3163 ten days ago.  Just over 1000 new tests and test positivity is down to 1.87. 
No new deaths. 44 new cases.  6 new hospitalizations.  (I found an overview dashboard today that I haven't seen before - the State has lots of duplication in reporting.  It says there were 120 total hospitalizations. [UPDATE 8/30: It turns out this is combined resident and non-resident]    The one I've been regularly using says 215.  So I'm sticking with the old one.  There'd be 12 new hospitalizations using the 120 figure.)   This is getting old.  But at least in Alaska we're holding almost steady and not exploding like other places.  

Saturday, August 29, 2020 - Moving up somewhat again.  No new deaths,  1 new hospitalization, 89/92 new cases. fewer recoveries (17), so the active cases are back over 3100, to 3135.  
Over 6000 new tests and positivity is down slightly to 2.16. (This measure can be confusing because it's a 7 day moving average, so each number in the seven days can be different each day.  If you look at the chart now, yesterday is 2.03.  But yesterday it was listed as 2.22.) 

Friday, August 28, 2020 - Did anyone else notice how fast we got to the end of August?  No new deaths, no new hospitalizations.  But, there are 118 new resident cases (State and I have the same number on that) and 5/3 new non-resident cases.  (My count is 5, state's is 3)
About 3300 new tests, and test positivity slightly up to 2.22.
And our active cases are climbing up again - 43 more than yesterday to 3062.  
And our total case count (residents only) is now over 5000 to 5093.  

Thursday, August 27, 2020 - It does look like all the new recoveries yesterday and Tuesday were administrative catching up.  There were only 20 listed today and with 80/84 new cases, we're back up over 3000 active cases - 3019.  
New new deaths.  Six new hospitalizations.  
About 1600 new tests and positivity was 2.14, a slight dip.  
Let's see what the next week brings us.  

Wednesday, August 26, 2020 - We're in a good spot right now.  There was one new death.  But yesterday's four deaths turned out to include two that had happened a week or two ago that were only identified for yesterday's post.  
52 new cases. (State and I had the same number today) Only 1 new non-resident case listed.
The big news is 120 recoveries on top of yesterday's 105 recoveries. I'm guessing the state has just caught up on a bunch of recoveries.  
But it means we are below 3000 active cases - 2959 to be exact. (Exact, of course, means by the State's count.  We don't know how many unidentified cases are out there.)  If this trend continues that would be great news.  It also doesn't include the active non-resident cases, which is 635 today.  
Just under 1000 new tests and the test positivity jumped up past 2 again to 2.17.  

Tuesday, August 25, 2020 - Good news and bad news.  
BAD NEWS: 4 new deaths.  That's they highest one day count ever.  There were two 2-death days in the past.  
GOOD NEWS: There were 105 recoveries and only 33/34 new cases.  So our active case total dropped by 72 to 3028. (This is Alaska residents only.)
Fewer new cases and fewer active cases is great news.  But four more people died.  
There were about 3300 tests and positivity rate inched back up to 1.74, but still below 2 and a fairly good score.  It would seem locking back down (particularly in Anchorage) is paying off in terms of the virus, though it surely hurts business owners and their employees.  

Monday, August 24, 2020 - The big news is that the number of active cases dropped by 46 to 3104, the lowest we've been since last Wednesday when we were at 3093.  The main reason for the drop is an increase of 115 new recoveries.  
We still added 69/71 new cases.  No new deaths, but 5 new hospitalizations.  
Just over 3000 new tests.  Our test positivity is down to 1.64 (that's a 7 day average.)
40 people are hospitalized with COVID-19.  

Sunday, August 23, 2020 - Yet another new death.  We're now at 32.  
  • It took us 43 days (3/4/2020 - 5/6/2020) to go from zero to ten deaths.
  • It took us 81 days (5/6/2020 - 7/25/2020) to go from ten to twenty deaths.
  • It took us 27 days (7/25/2020 - 8/21/2020) to go from twenty to thirty deaths.
Three more hospitalizations.  We had 58 recoveries.
64/66 new cases, no new non-resident cases.
About 1100 new tests.  Test positivity down a smidgen to 1.74.  
Total active cases (resident) is up slightly to 3150, but still below our high of 3163.  

Saturday, August 22, 2020 - Another new death.  Three new hospitalizations.  89/90 new cases.  Two new non-resident cases.  Five more in the resident active file, but still 16 below the high point two days ago.  
Just under 5000 new tests and test positivity down slightly to 1.86.  We're still gaining new cases every day, but we've had a few days with a fair number of recoveries to keep the active level down.  
Right now Alaska has the highest (best) number of tests per 100,000 population - 42,396.  Followed by Rhode Island and New York.  

Friday, August 21, 2020 - The numbers are odd today.  The test numbers jumped by almost 9,000.  When I checked the previous few days, all those numbers had been adjusted up.  Test positivity was back under 2 - to 1.91.
  • One new death. 
  • 4 new hospitalizations.  
  • 68 new cases (state says 70).  
  • 88 new recoveries.  
  • For the first time since June 22, our number of active cases is down by 21 to 3124.   Looking at the new cases and recoveries (plus the death) I think it should be down by 19.  But I'm doing all this - and the chart above - based on what is posted daily.  Not on after the fact changes. 
That's actually one of the reasons I'm doing this - to document the daily announcements.  At this point I believe the State charts are being adjusted only because of legitimate changes of information the State gets.  It's not intentional.  It's not an attempt to manipulate the data.  It's just that collecting and identifying everything into the proper categories is complicated.  

Thursday, August 20, 2020 - 82/84 new cases.  Up to 4520 total resident cases and 3163 active resident cases.  3 new non-resident cases.  
  • No new deaths
  • 3 new hospitalizations. 
  • Just about 1800 new tests.  Test positivity slipped back up over 2, to 2.09.  
  • We're just barely holding it back.  Think about sandbags trying to keep the water out.  The water isn't above the sandbags,  but it's getting in here and there and 'dry' side of the sandbags is getting deeper and deeper .  Every day we have more active cases.  The last time we had zero new hospitalizations was August 7.  The last time we had zero new cases was May 24.  

Wednesday, August 19, 2020 - 67/78 new cases, 3 new non-resident cases. (The gap between my calculation 4438 (today's total) - 4371 (yesterday's total) = 67.  The State reports 76. 
No new deaths.
5 new hospitalizations.  There's been a total of 184, and 45 currently hospitalized. 
Only 840 new tests reported and the test positivity number is 1.94, up a bit from yesterday.  
There's a high of 3093 active cases now.  That's the number that keeps climbing.  Recoveries aren't keeping up with new cases.  

Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 60 new resident cases and 5 new non-resident cases.  Our active resident cases is up 26 to 2057 (and another 600+ non-resident active cases.)  
1 new death
4 new hospitalizations
About 4400 new tests
Test positivity up a bit to 1.79.  Still under 2. 

Monday, August 17, 2020 - Looking better today.  Only 50 new resident cases and zero non-resident new cases reported.  No new deaths, one new hospitalizations - were at 38 total.  There were about 4000 new tests and the test positivity is under 2 again - to 1.71.  The total active cases is now over 3000 (3031) and the total cases is now 4309.  That means that almost 75% of all the Alaska cases since March are NOW active cases.  

Sunday, August 16, 2020 - The State site says it was updated this morning, but none of the charts with the data are coming up on my computer.  They tweeted last night they were doing maintenance so I'm assuming this is related to that.  I'll put up new numbers when I can get them.  
1:00pm  I was able to get the charts in Chrome, but not Safari. 
No new deaths.  1 new hospitalization.  That State and I agree today on the number of new cases: 103 and 3 more non-resident cases.  We've increased 70 to 2994 active cases.  Tomorrow we'll surely break 3000.  Almost 5000 new tests and the test positivity dropped to 2.05.  

Saturday, August 15, 2020 - Most of the numbers are up - 
  • new deaths - 1
  • new hospitalizations - 5
  • new cases (residents)  - 83
  • active cases (residents) - 2924 (up 70)
  • test positivity - 2.72
 COVID-19 cases in the hospital now is down from 39 to 36 since Thursday.  That's good.

Friday, August 14, 2020 - Up 110/102 new resident cases. There were 4073 total cases today and 3963 yesterday.  4073-3963=110  but the states says 102. There are similar differences in non resident totals - I count 9 new cases and the state says 5.  But they make adjustments as they get corrected info and I just rely on the posted information.  As I've said before these daily differences seem to wash out over time. 
But, despite the state saying their model predicts we're going to go down, we keep going up and today's new case total was higher than we've had lately and our total active cases continues to grow. 
There were under 2000 new tests and our test positivity was 2.72, the smallest possible drop (this is a seven day average.)  Have a safe weekend.

Thursday, August 13, 2020 -  82 new resident cases (the State numbers and mine agree for once today) and 13 new non-resident cases.  95 new cases altogether.  Active cases (resident only) are up 81 to 2755.  No new deaths.  Two new hospitalizations.  There are now 39 people in the hospital with COVID-19.  
There were less than 2000 new tests and the positivity rate is up again, to 2.73.  
Anchorage 30  Fairbanks 15    Matsu 8   Ketchikan 2  Kenai 4   Juneau - 6   NW Arctic 2 
Prince of Wales 2  YK - 1  N. Slope 1  Nome 4  Kodiak 4  Bristol Bay/Lake & Pen - 1

Wednesday, August 12, 2020 - 60 more resident cases and 6 more non-residents.  And a new death (up to 27 total).  3 new hospitalizations (that's 27 since last Wednesday).  Our total active cases is now 2674.  That's an increase of 267 since last Wednesday.  There were fewer tests posted (less than 2000, but see the note* at the bottom of today's update) and the test positivity rose to 2.54.

*Yesterday's State update had this note about testing.  I put it here just so the complications of measurement - and why the measurer has to make decision about what to measure and how to organize the numbers - is clearer to people.  And why you can legitimately have different numbers.  But, of course, you can have deliberate manipulation as well so that you support what you want to be true.

"Testing data presentation has changed as of 8/11/2020 in order to provide a more complete and accurate geographic location. These data use the ordering provider’s physical location to attribute geography. Prior presentation used the patient’s address city for the commercial and hospital/facility laboratory data, and the ordering provider location for the ASPHL laboratory data. This transition better reflects the amount of testing occurring in specific geographic locations and results in fewer tests being attributed to the Out of State, Other, or Unknown categories. Due to changes in data source, testing counts by date collected, date completed, lab type, result, and geographic location may change and will no longer be comparable to testing data reported prior to 8/11/2020."

Tuesday, August 11, 2020 - We're back moving up faster after yesterday.  Active cases went up 34 to 2630.  I'm guessing that when they added "and presumed recovered" they added all those accumulated presumed but not officially recovered yesterday and that's why Active cases only went up 4 yesterday.  
We had 34 new cases.  The State said 35, but they had one less non-resident cases than I counted, so I'm guessing they moved someone from one category to the other.  But, of course, there could be other explanations. 
There were over 10,000 tests yesterday and the test positivity went up slightly to 2.36.  So, overall, we've pulled back a bit from the steep incline we'd gotten onto.  Closing down bars and restaurants for inside customers probably has something to do with this.  But it's hard to say for sure.  

Monday, August 10, 2020 - I only just got to my computer - decided a bike ride took precedence.  But I'm back now at 1pm and the State hasn't updated yet.  Will update when the State does.  I just checked again and it says:  "The August 10 update is delayed due to technical difficulties."
3:04 - The number got up a while ago.  Better numbers - only 2 new active cases - the lowest increase in a while.  2596.  64/69 new resident cases.  62 new recoveries. (The State has added "and presumed recoveries" to this number.)  No new deaths, 2 new hospitalizations.  Test positivity down to 2.28.  

Sunday, August 9, 2020 - We're the patient who has both positive and negative signs.  No new deaths, 3 new hospitalizations.  98 new resident cases (my number and the state number matched today) and two new non-resident cases.  Our test positivity is down slightly to 2.58.  My previous couple of days' numbers don't match their graph.  I'm guessing that because these are seven day rolling averages, that maybe the numbers of their chart change daily as the oldest measure drops and the newest one comes on.  
For me the most troubling number (obviously related to new cases and recoveries) is total active cases.  That continues to set new records every day.  It's up 84 to 2594.  
Scientists are learning more and more about the virus as more data become available.  A hopeful Washington Post article in today's ADN says that in some populations a large percent get the virus but are asymptomatic.  It seems that many people with only light exposure often (usually?) have few or no symptoms, and that some humans have T-cells that recognize the virus and can fight it.  They aren't sure why, but speculated that previous vaccinations for other things help with this one.  Pneumonia and Polio vaccinations seem to increase one's ability to fight COVID-19.  

Saturday, August 8, 2020 - Turns out yesterday was just a blip.  Today 1 new death and 8 new hospitalizations were posted.  77 new resident cases and 8 new non-residents.  Just under 5000 new tests with a test positivity of 2.68.  The test positivity scores for the last few days are lower than what I've seen, so I'm guessing the state adjusted previous scores to the 7 day average from the previous 3 day average.  
Scanning through the table above, 8 new hospitalizations is a new daily high.  The previous high was 5 a couple of times.  
Current active cases is up by 61 to 2510.  (That's just Alaska residents.  You can now adjust the dashboards to show non-resident totals and all (resident and non-resident) as well as just resident totals.

Here's the link to the charts.  There are a number of charts.  Most windows have several options under them.  Check the left side of the page as well to make other adjustments.  Use your cursor to see which ones are interactive.  Lots of information there.  

Friday, August 7, 2020 - No new deaths or hospitalizations.  That's positive, since with the increasing number of new cases, I expected these numbers to be rising about now.  There were 52/53 new resident cases, 13 new non-resident.  Total active cases is still on a steady climb, up to 2449.  When that number starts to decline we'll be headed in the right direction.  
There were about 7,000  new tests and test positivity is down a smidgen to 3.02.  They changed this from a running three day average to a running 7 day average - which is more consistent with national tracking systems.  

Thursday, August 6, 2020 - 35/40 new resident cases, 5 new non-resident cases.  It's getting harder to keep reporting these numbers without lots of caveats.  The state modified its dashboard yesterday and there's a lot more detailed information, particularly on non-residents.  I started all this to document the day by day changes in the numbers, since the previous day's numbers evaporated with the new day's numbers.  I wanted to track all the numbers, 1) to be able to see the progression of the virus and 2) to preserve the historical numbers that the state was posting.  So, while the state makes adjustments to its numbers daily (making changes and corrections to previous counts) I'm just using the original posted numbers.  So when I write above 35/40 new cases, it means by my calculation (=today's # - yesterday's #) over the state's calculation (I don't know why they have five more new cases than my formula.) So 35 is my count and 40 is the state count.  Now they have more than total non-resident cases, they've added new non-resident cases.  There is a difference between my total (res and non-res new cases) and the state's.  
Should I even continue this?  I've decided for the time being to keep it up.  Why?  Because while the state now offers a lot more information, it is also harder for people to find and keep track of it all.  Their interactive graphs have lots of info over time.  But I think the table I've been using is an easy way to see the most basic data about COVID-19 in Alaska and how it changes over time. The daily differences between my numbers (which are all based on state numbers) and the state numbers are minor and seem to iron out over time.

All that said, today's 'trend' is good - no new deaths, fewer new cases, but 4 new hospitalizations.  Our total active cases (resident only) only rose by 8 - the lowest increase I see in weeks.  But our test positivity went to 3.05.  The constant change in that number (despite being a 3 day average) constantly mystifies me.  It was 1.51 two days ago, 2.75 yesterday and today we've had fewer new cases, but it goes on up.  

Mask, mask, mask when out in public.  If enough people wear masks, the non-maskers will start to feel the peer pressure to mask.  

Wednesday, August 5, 2020 - 55/56 new resident cases and 3 new non-residents.  No new deaths but one new hospitalization.  Test positivity back up to 2.75.  And every day now is a new record for active cases - today we're at 2407.  

Anchorage 38  Fairbanks 1  SE Fairbanks 1   Matsu 3    Ketchikan 1  Kenai 2   Juneau - 1  Sitka 2  NW Arctic 4  

I understand why restaurant and bar owners want to stay open in defiance of the Mayor's emergency orders.  One's immediate short term benefits are in conflict with the community's long term physical and economic health.  I suspect that our president's ridiculous and inconsistent and outright false pronouncements are behind the resistance.  We are in an emergency.  We're relatively well off because of early action.  But loosening the restrictions have put us at the highest level we've been.  And leaving things open will just keep increasing the problem.  The more virus, the more people will stay home and not spend money in local stores.  It's a vicious cycle.  We have to get the virus to manageable low levels before the economy is going to get better.  Not easy to understand if you just listen to the president.  

Tuesday, August 4, 2020 - Some better numbers today.  53 new resident cases and 7 new non-resident cases.  No new deaths, one new hospitalization.  There were 41 recoveries so the increase in total active cases was only 12, to 2382.  
Anchorage 41  Fairbanks 3    Matsu 6   Y-K 1  Bethel 1  Juneau - 1  N Slope 1  Nome 2  Kulsilvac 1
Aleutians East 1
There were just under 7000 new tests and the test positivity dropped below 2, to 1.51.  These are better numbers than lately.  Let's see if this is our new direction or just a blip.    

Monday, August 3, 2020 - "Only" 61 new resident cases, and 19 non-resident new cases. 
1 new death (we're at 25 now) and one new hospitalization (we're at 28 current COVID-19 patients in the hospital.  Inpatient beds available are up to 624 from yesterday's 596, and ICU beds are up to 90 from yesterday's 77.  
Therewere over 7,000 new tests (some people are taking this seriously enough to be tested, though it's not clear how many of these are required by employers or for travelers.  Our test positivity has gone done a bit to 2.27. 
Our total active cases reported today is 2370, up 46 from yesterday's total.  

Sunday, August 2, 2020 -  144/145 new resident cases, 13 more non-resident.  So if each of these infects 3 more people and each of those infects 3 more. . . you get the picture.  No new deaths, but one new hospitalization.  Total active cases up from yesterday by 142 to 2324.  

Anchorage 108  Fairbanks 3    Matsu 14  Kenai 3    Valdez/Cordova 3  Y-K 1  Bethel 1  Sitka - 1       NW Arctic 3  Wrangell 3  Juneau 1

 About 4500 new tests, test positivity down slightly to 2.41.  We were the 9th lowest state on this measure yesterday.  Anchorage's new regs start tomorrow morning, so at least two weeks if not more to see the increase in active cases level off.  If people comply with the regs.  We have, statewide, 596 available hospital beds out of 842.  27 of those are occupied by COVID-19 patients.  We have 77 available ICU beds out of 153.  That seems ok for now, but only if we stop the steady rise in active patients.  Two Sundays ago we had 1140.  Today we have 2182.  Our hospital beds will start to fill up if we continue at this rate.  So even if you don't think COVID will make you sick, a car crash or gunshot or anything requiring a hospital bed will be hard to accommodate.

Saturday, August 1, 2020 - 146 New Cases! 110 of those in Anchorage.  4 new non-residents for a total of 150 new cases.  Not our highest, but our second highest daily new case count.  
One new death.  Our hospitalization number is the same as yesterday (133), but given that someone died, who was, presumably, in a hospital, we must have had at least one new hospitalization to take that person's place.  
There were about 5500 new tests and our test positivity is slightly up to 2.81.  
Anchorage's new tighter regulations (Emergency Order 15) go into effect Monday.  So assume that people will party in bars and restaurants this weekend before they close.  

Anchorage 110  Fairbanks 5    Matsu 20  Kenai 8  Ketchikan 1   Valdez/Cordova 2  Sitka 1

We had (what in hindsight was) a tiny bump in late March/earlyApril and then a balmy May, when the Recoveries (Navy blue) were much greater than total cases. Now we're rising rapidly.  You can see this on the state chart.  Key is the orange - active cases.  This is what exponential looks like, and compared to other states, we're doing well.  

Friday, July 31, 2020 -  Up again, even more than yesterday - 112/108 (mine/state), 6 new non-resident cases.  This is only the third time we've had more than 100 new resident cases!  We have broken the 2000 mark in active cases - 2069.  No new deaths, 5 new hospitalizations.  Only 28 COVID-19 cases are in the hospital according to the state charts.

Anchorage 75  Fairbanks 13    Matsu 9  Kenai 2 Aleutians West 1   Valdez/Cordova 2  Yakatat 1
Y-K 3    Juneau 2

There were about 7,000 new tests and test positivity was up a bit to 2.52.  Personally, I'm surprised at the reports from friends who are out and about.  They say they wear masks and distance, but I know that just isn't possible sometimes.  

Thursday, July 30, 2020 - Back up - 81/84 (mine based on yesterday and today's numbers/State's #).  One more death.  Three more hospitalizations.  

Anchorage 42  Fairbanks 6    Matsu 13  Kenai 5 Aleutians West 1   Valdez/Cordova 1  NW Arctic  9  
Bethel 1   North Slope 1  Yakatat 1    Juneau 2

There were less than 2000 new tests, and test positivity went up slightly to 2.44.  

Wednesday, July 29, 2020 - "Only" 68/(67 by State's count) new resident cases and 24 new non-resident cases.  No new deaths, but five new hospitalizations.  There were almost 10,000 new tests and the test positivity was down below 2 - to 1.95.  I'd say that's good, but that is a three day rolling average and seems to go up and dow pretty easily.  But it's still well below the alarm level of 5.  The state's chart shows these locations for new cases:

Anchorage 53  Fairbanks 2   SE  Matsu 4  Kenai 5 Valdez/Cordova 1 

Tuesday, July 28, 2020 -  107 new cases (State says 110) and 37 new non-resident cases, for a combined total of 144 new cases.  (The discrepancies between the State and my numbers stem from a) my just using the numbers posted daily and b) the state adjusting those numbers as they get more details about cases.  In the long run they seem to balance out.)

Anchorage 80  Fairbanks 6   SE Fairbanks  1  Matsu 5  Kenai 6 Valdez/Cordova 1  NW Arctic 5  
Juneau 6          Yakatat 1       Prince of Wales/Hyder  1

Four new hospitalizations and one new death to 22 total. It took about two months to go from zero deaths to ten.  It's taken about the same time to go to 20 deaths.  I suspect there are several factors.

  • We had an early lockdown and during that time 
    • the world learned a lot about how to handle COVID-19 patients
    • our hospitals didn't get over crowded and we even built some back up space we haven't needed
  • We've got testing and contact tracing up and running fairly quickly and people could be found early, though the numbers now are making this hard to keep on top of
  • We have a younger population than other states - only Utah has a smaller percent of people over 65, and only Utah has a lower median age. (That doesn't count territories, a few of which are lower than Alaska.)

But now we have 1871 active cases there's a large pool for people to get sicker and die in the next few weeks.

Monday, July 27, 2020 - Numbers up late today.  98 new resident cases, 6 new non-resident cases.
1 new death.  No new hospitalizations.  Our total of active cases jumped by 97 from yesterday to 1784.  The test number chart and the test positivity chart haven't been updated.  I'll check it later and add the new numbers if they are up.
 [Updated 1:55pm:  The test #s and positivity are still not up after my bike ride.  But even after all this time I discovered a useful new tool on the state's dashboard.  In the upper right corner of some is an enlarge button.  This is most helpful for me trying to track the location of new cases.  The main chart keeps getting smaller and smaller, but with the enlarge option, the chart is much easier to read.

Anchorage 64  Fairbanks 3   Matsu 8  Kenai 4 Valdez/Cordova 2  NW Arctic 5  YK - 3
NorthSlope 3   Sitka 1  Juneau 2  Yakatat 1  Prince of Wales/Hyder  1]

Sunday, July 26, 2020 -  Sit down.  186 new cases!  Not quite double the previous high of 94 two Sundays ago. Mostly in Anchorage.  Plus 48 new non-resident cases.  This is a huge jump.
On the other hand there were no new deaths or hospitalizations.  But following a jump like this, they are coming in a week or two or three.  (My new case math and the State number matched today)
There were about 2000 new tests and the test positivity was down below 2, to 1.91.  I'm still trying to figure how that happens with a jump like this.  Test positivity is a 3 day rolling average.  We have the sixth lowest rate among US states today, but this is a number that seems to change quickly.  Hawaii was the lowest last time I looked, and now they are higher than Alaska.

Anchorage 158  Fairbanks 11   Matsu 4  Juneau 2  Yakatat 2  Wrangell 2

There are now 1687 active cases in Alaska (residents).  Yesterday was 1503.  If this is not an aberration, we're in big trouble.

Saturday, July 25, 2020 - One new death.  Four new hospitalizations.  89 (State says 88) new resident cases, 31 new non-resident cases.
Anchorage 47  Fairbanks 7   Matsu 9  Kenai 8    Valdez/Cordova 4    Y-K  3  NW Arctic 4

About 5000 new tests.  Three day rolling test positivity down a bit to 2.12.

The number of new cases isn't surging in the last week.  It's ranging between 50s and 90s.  But it's outpacing the Recovered numbers and the number of Active cases - 1503 - is surging and that's troubling.  That's the number that has to come down.  But first the daily new cases has to come down.  That's going to take serious mask wearing and serious distancing.

Friday, July 24, 2020 -  Numbers were up a little late today.  And I don't see the Seward seafood processing numbers I mentioned yesterday in the totals.  But what's up looks a little better.
No new deaths or hospitalizations.
57 new cases based on subtracting yesterday's number from today's.  State says 59.  7 non- resident.
There were about 10,500 tests yesterday, I'm pretty sure that's a new high.  Test positivity is back down below 3, to 2.38.
Total active cases does continue to grow.  It was 1375 yesterday and today it's 1430.

Enjoy the day.  Go out and watch the mushrooms grow.

Thursday, July 23, 2020 - Things are getting confusing.  The news said there 96 new cases coming from a seafood processing plant in Seward, but today's stats say there are only 5 new non-resident cases.  I guess we'll see those numbers tomorrow.  The total number of Alaska Covid cases is 2192 - 60 more than yesterday's 2132.  But the state says there are 65 new cases.  Are they starting to combine the resident and non-resident cases into one total?  Or is that just a reflection of adjustments to figures they had up yesterday?
No new deaths. 2 new hospitalizations.
Test positivity is up to 3.21 (but remember that's a 3 day rolling average).

Anchorage 32  Fairbanks 14   Matsu 8  Kenai 1    Valdez/Cordova 4    Y-K  4

- Wednesday, July 22, 2020 - 91/92 new resident cases and 4 new non-resident cases.
One new death and four new hospitalizations.  I'd note that generally, deaths lag behind increases in hospitalizations by two or three weeks.  We are rushing up in hospitalizations, but we've gone up 23 since July 13.  Recoveries are happening, but new cases are happening much faster.  So each day we are setting records for active cases.  Today we're up to 1360 active cases!  That many people are confirmed active cases.  That's up 458 since July 13.  And then there are all the people walking around who haven't been diagnosed.  So the odds of having contact with someone with COVID-19 has gone up significantly in Alaska in the last couple of weeks.
There were 7700 new tests reported, which is a lot for us, but despite that test positivity hit 3.0.  We're #2 in the nation, behind New York, for tests per 100,000 (23,810/100,000).  But remember, many of those are the same people (like essential workers) who get lots of tests.
And we're #2 from the bottom (after Hawaii) with only 2.4 deaths per 100,000. (Hawaii is 1.7)
We're #4 from the bottom of confirmed cases per 100,000 at 264/100K.  (Montana, Vermont, and Hawaii have fewer)  You can see these stats at the Johns Hopkins page here.  But remember lots of states have less than perfect numbers.

Anchorage 41  Fairbanks 10   Matsu 8  Kenai 3  Juneau 7  Valdez/Cordova 11  Sitka 1  Y-K  3  Ketchikan 1

Tuesday, July 21, 2020 - Alert:  Today I've rearranged some columns and added two new ones:  1) total new cases (resident & non-resident) and 2) test positivity.

92 new resident cases, 19 new non-resident cases for a total of 111 new cases.

Anchorage 62  Fairbanks 5   Matsu 7  Kenai 7  Juneau 1  Valdez/Cordova 1  NW Arctic 1 Sitka 1
Eastern Aleutians 1 (Again, these are just resident cases)

5 new hospitalizations, No new deaths.  We're up to 1286 active cases (I believe this is only residents)
Test positivity = 2.3 slightly down from yesterday.

Monday, July 20, 2020 - New positive cases up 75.  New non-resident cases is 62!  I think I have to adjust the chart above to include that number specifically (I have daily totals of non-resident cases, so you can do the math).  I also have to add a column for total new cases that includes resident and non-resident.  Reports today on a fishing ship arriving in Dutch Harbor with 85 cases makes me wonder where those numbers are.

Anchorage 52  Fairbanks 7   Matsu 7  Kenai 6  Juneau 6  Y-K 10  Nome 1  

I'd note that as time goes by and the numbers increase, the chart holding them gets smaller.  You have to pick off these numbers with your cursor and it gets easier to miss numbers or get the wrong ones.  You can play with the chart yourself here.  It is in the lower left corner.

No new deaths, one new hospitalization for a total of 100 (all time, not currently.)

Test positivity is up a bit to 2.5.  We're going in the wrong direction quickly.

Alaska Public Radio asked some Alaska health experts what restrictions they're following.  If everyone followed these precautions, the numbers would start going down in ten days.  Glad to see I'm not the only one who waits a day to open the mail.  Take care everyone, we're in a small boat in a big storm and we still have people standing up and making us more vulnerable.  Alaska's been doing relatively well, but we're sliding into the kind of rapid growth other states thought they were immune to.

Sunday, July 19, 2020 -  New positive cases up 79 by my count*, but State posted it as 82.  Last Sunday was the all time high for new positive cases - 94.  Since then we dropped down as low as 40, but have been moving closer to the 94 high.  Today is the closest.  Also troubling is the number of non-resident new cases:  39, up from 364 to 403.  I think that's the highest non-resident one day new case total.
On the positive (though I suspect only in the short term) there were no new deaths or hospitalizations.

Anchorage 32  Fairbanks 9   SE Fairbanks 1 Matsu 9  Kenai 7  Juneau 4  Y-K 10  Nome 1

Our total active cases keep going up - 1144, up 75 from 1069 yesterday.
There were about 4600 new tests yesterday and our test positivity level went up to 2.15  - the first time we've been over 2.0 since April 17.  That's three months ago!  When we did 400 tests. (The fewer tests, the higher the positivity should be, because only the most serious cases were being tested.)

I'm guessing the virus will be requiring isolation until early next summer at the soonest.

*My count means I subtract today's total cases from yesterday's.  When the State adjusts numbers because of new or clarified data, we get slightly different numbers.

Saturday, July 18, 2020 - Back up today to 62 new cases and 16 new non-resident cases.  State websites says these are where (most) cases were:

Anchorage 32  Fairbanks 9   Matsu 6  Kenai 8  Juneau 2  Valdez/Cordova 2  NSlope 1

1 new death and hospitalization each.

Just over 3000 new tests.  Test positivity = 1.59 (that's a 3-day rolling average).

We seem to have it a peak last Sunday with 92/93 new cases.  Since then we've gone down and up, but well below the 93 mark.  BUT the number of active cases is steadily going up.  We're at 1069.  We've more than doubled our active cases since July 1.  We have over 8 times the number of active cases we had on June 1, when we had 130 cases.  Active cases decline when
New Recoveries + New Deaths > New Cases
New Recoveries stopped outpacing New Cases May 14, when we only had 33 active cases.

Friday, July 17, 2020 - We dipped a bit again.  That's good.  Only 40 more new cases (State says 39, but I'm just counting the difference between yesterday's total and today's.)  Also 9 more non-resident cases.  These daily new case numbers are going up and down, but the trend is up.  I hope that starts to change.  Picked up groceries today 'curbside' and everyone I saw from the car going in and out of the market had on a mask.  That's a positive change and shows that mandatory edicts do work, though it's a small sample size.  But I even saw people wearing masks alone in the cars.  I think people know it matters and those who refuse to wear masks just don't think they'll get seriously ill, or they already have mental health issues.

Anchorage 24  Fairbanks 2   Matsu 4  Kenai 6  Juneau 3  Sitka 2  (I know, it doesn't add up to 40, but it's the data they've put up on the State site.)

About 2400 new tests and test positivity close to yesterday at 1.53.  The Johns Hopkins site on this puts us at 2.79.  Just a reminder to take all the short term data with a giant grain of salt.  And be skeptical of the long term numbers too.  

Thursday, July 16, 2020 - 3rd day in a row that we're moving back up.  My numbers (subtracting yesterday's total new cases from today's) show 62 new cases.  State says 65.  Also 15 new non-resident cases.  Big jump for Fairbanks.

Anchorage 21  Fairbanks 23   Matsu 1  Kenai 11  Valdez/Cordova 2  NW Haines 1

No new hospitalizations or deaths.

Total active cases is another new high 988.  Tomorrow we'll break 1000.
There were nearly 7,000 new tests reported which I think is an all time high.  I'm assuming that means people were tested, and it could be a week before we find out the results.

Test positivity (3 day rolling average) is 1.57.  Over 1 means each infected person infects more than one more person.  Total US positivity is about 8.5% (7 day average).   Alaska has, as of now, the 7th lowest state positivity number and is one of 19 states that are under the 'recommended' level of 5.

But remember, all the numbers are a bit squishy.  I think Alaska probably has some of the best numbers, but it's hard to post daily totals when the data coming in is incomplete, so they make lots of after-the-fact adjustments.  And it appears that some states are intentionally playing with the numbers for political reasons.
And yesterday we learned that the Trump administration wants states to report to Health and Human Services instead of to the CDC.  Given Trump's regular concerns about testing numbers and how that reflects on him, it's hard for me to imagine the Trump administration making this change is for the public's good.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020  - Back up to 52 new cases (or 53 on State chart, which means they adjusted a number somewhere).  5 more non-resident cases.

Deaths unchanged.
Hospitalizations up 4.
Active cases up to another new high of 945.

Anchorage 34  Fairbanks 6   Matsu 3  Valdez/Cordova 3  Kusilvac 1  Y-K 2 Ketchikan 2  Juneau 1  Kodiak 1

Wear a mask when you're in public.  More and more agreement that masks matter and help the wearer as well as others.  Even McConnell and Governor of Mississippi say masks help lower the incidence of COVID-19.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020 - Down another 20 from yesterday - 40 new cases plus 14 new non-resident cases.  Hospitalizations up 5!  The large number of new cases last week are starting increase the hospitalizations.  22 people recovered, so the increase in total cases is 18, to 920.
So, 2 days with big decreases in new cases.

If 80% of people wear masks, the decline might continue.  From University of California San Francisco:
"The latest forecast from the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation suggests that 
Imagine, people not wearing masks are literally mass murderers.  (Mask murderers? Unmasked murderers?)

Anchorage 18  Fairbanks 5  Kenai 6  Matsu 7  Valdez/Cordova 2  Y-K 1  Juneau 1  Kodiak 1

UPDATED:  Here's one of the more hopeful articles on masks I've seen:
"Breathing in a small amount of virus may lead to no disease or far more mild infection. But inhaling a huge volume of virus particles can result in serious disease or death."
It says, that wearing masks does, indeed, protect the mask wearer!

Monday, July 13, 2020 - "Only" 60 new cases plus 11 new non-resident cases.  Four days ago, this would be a new high.  But after yesterday's 94+22 non-res cases, it almost looks reasonable.  Going down is good, definitely.  But only if it's a new trend, not a temporary dip because it was Sunday.
There were 1100 or so new tests and test positivity was a recent high (these scores were higher in April) of 1.89.

Anchorage 34  Fairbanks 11  Kenai 3  Matsu 5  NWArctic 1  Bethel 2  N.Slope 1  Kodiak 1

Sunday, July 12, 2020 - Hey Gov, it's past time to take action.  You were great when this started but the numbers are getting worse each day.  Deaths will start going up in a week or two.

94/93* new cases!  That's 150% of yesterday!  The highest new case number by 31 and yesterday was the highest ever before that.  And the same the day before.  And shortly before that we thought 46 and 34 were really high numbers.  We're demonstrating exponential growth.
That's not even counting the 12 [Sorry that should have been 22] new non-resident cases.
847 Active cases.  At this rate, 1000 isn't far off.
One new hospitalizations.  No new deaths, which stand at 17.
About 2000 new tests with a 1.54 test positivity rate.  That's higher than yesterday's 1.46, but still far below the 4.03 level back on April 7.  But back then, the only people getting tested had a lot of screening for symptoms and travel and less than 300 people were tested daily.  (I would note that at noon, the line of cars at the drive in testing today was just a few cars on the street, and some already in the lot.)
Alaskans, you don't have to wait for the governor's orders - wear masks in public.  The more people wear masks the slower the spread, the better hospitals and heath care workers can handle COVID and non-COVID patients.  Let's peak at 94 new cases.  Let's NOT break 100, but it looks like it's going to get worse before it gets better.

Saturday, July 11, 2020 - Another new record - 62 new cases based on yesterday and today's numbers, but State says 63.  Plus 15 new non-resident cases.
The most new hospitalizations ever - 5.
No new deaths.
Total active cases setting new records daily 718.  (July 1 we had 435)
There were only about 1400 new tests, so the large number is not because of increased testing. Our 3-day average test positivity rating was 1.45.  (See yesterday's update below for more on test positivity.)
Back in April I made a chart comparing the cases by age against the state's population by age.  I did a new one yesterday.  People in the youngest groups are being infected at a higher rate than in April, particularly the 20-29 age group.
Chart from April 18, 2020 (click pic to enlarge and focus)

Chart from July 10, 2020

Friday, July 10, 2020 - A new record high number of cases:  51. Plus 7 more non-resident new cases.
No new deaths or hospitalizations.  There were just over 6000 new tests, the most I remember.  Some could say that led to higher numbers, but the test positivity rate (% of tests that come back positive) was only a little higher than the last few days at 1.46.  The state posts these as a three day running average.  The previous levels  were 1. 24 and 1.02.  Positivity levels above 1 mean that people are spreading the virus to more than just one person.  We still have one of the lowest positivity levels, but we don't really want to see it rising.     From Johns Hopkins University and Medicine:
"If a positivity rate is too high, that may indicate that the state is only testing the sickest patients who seek medical attention, and is not casting a wide enough net to know how much of the virus is spreading within its communities. A low rate of positivity in testing data can be seen as a sign that a state has sufficient testing capacity for the size of their outbreak and is testing enough of its population to make informed decisions about reopening. Which U.S. states are testing enough to meet the WHO’s goal?
The graph below compares states’ rate of positivity to the recommended positivity rate of 5% or below. States that meet the WHO’s recommended criteria appear in green, while the states that are not testing enough to meet the positivity benchmark are in orange."
You can see that comparison of states here.

Thursday, July 9, 2020 - 46 new cases today.  3 new non-resident cases, though these non-resident cases seem particularly vulnerable to later adjustments.  48 was our highest new case count, last Saturday.  There was one new hospitalization.  Our active case count is an all time high of 684.

Anchorage 22  Fairbanks 8  Kenai 7  Matsu  6  Petersburg 1  Nome 1

Hospitalization is creeping up, but we still have 652 hospital beds available out of 1,400. 92 ICU beds available out of 169.  And lots of ventilators available.  As long as we don't keep accelerating, we should be ok.  But, of course, these are mostly concentrated, I suspect, in Anchorage and Fairbanks.  Here's the State's short term projection chart - not pretty. (State Page for various charts.)

I asked Dr. Zink via Twitter if they were tracking discrete individuals who had been tested - separated from those, like front-line employees, who are tested multiple times - so that we could determine the actual percentage of Alaskan residents who have been tested.
The answer was

Wednesday, July 8, 2020- Back up to 40 new cases, 1 new hospitalization.  No deaths.  Also 3 [7] new non-resident cases.  Though State says 9 non-residents, I'm going by today's numbers compared to yesterday's.

Anchorage 19  Fairbanks 5  Kenai 9  Matsu  3  Kusilvak  1   Aleutians West 1  NW Arctic 1

I can't warn often enough to take daily numbers with a grain of salt.  There are lots of legitimate reasons for them to be inaccurate.  The State could get a confirmed case that doesn't have a location yet.  Or it's not clear if it is resident or non-resident and then when they clear that up, numbers get changed.

Yesterday I saw a map of the US showing the number of new cases in each US State for July.  It was a little low for Alaska, but close.  One state had zero new cases in July - Kansas.  But today on the news they said Oklahoma was a hot spot.  And Kansas has a long border with Oklahoma.  So that seemed odd.  So I looked up COVID cases in Kansas and, sure enough, they have had several hundred since July 1.

So, don't trust anything until you double check.  My sense of the Alaska numbers is that in the long run, the numbers are reasonably accurate, though daily counts may not be.  And in some places, it appears that COVID  numbers are intentionally withheld.  Like the president says, if you don't test (or count) the virus disappears.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020 - New total cases is 1184 up from yesterday's posted 1166.  I say it this way because the state says 19 new cases, but it adds up to 18 by those numbers.  But the state makes adjustments.  I'm just trying to track what they post daily.
In any case, that's less than what they posted yesterday.  However, there was one more death and 4 new hospitalizations.  Those two categories lag behind the new cases.  So, even if the new cases stay low, we can expect more hospitalizations and possible deaths ahead, till the curve flattens.
All in all, we've dropped from the high 40s to the 20s and now the teens.  Let's hope that trend continues.
Anchorage 13  Kenai 1   Matsu 2  Ketchikan 1  Cordova/Valdez 1

Monday, July 6, 2020 - It's 12:10pm - after the State's noon target time to post updates.  That's usually been a bad sign.  Either they are intentionally delaying bad news, or more likely, having trouble dealing with all the data in a timely way.  I'll update here when new data is posted.
It's now 1:00pm and still no update.
Updates went up at 1:25pm  - 28 new cases, only 2 new non-resident cases.  Two more hospitalizations.  No new deaths.
Anchorage 19  Fairbanks 4  Kenai 3  Matsu 1
Tomorrow is the test of whether we've dropped back a bit for good, or whether this is just a blip due to the July 4th weekend.
The gap between active cases (598) and recovered (552) continues to grow wider since active cases surpassed recovered for the first time on July 4.
It looks like the daily test numbers have been adjusted.  There's an extra number - 126,515 - which I never saw.  I'd have assumed I just missed it, but a bunch of other numbers are on different days than I have them on and I couldn't have gotten that many days wrong.

Sunday, July, 5, 2020 - 27 new cases sounds like a decent number after yesterday's 48.  But three weeks ago it would have been alarming.  There were only about 1000 tests yesterday, which makes sense for July 4.  Let's hope Anchorage's mandatory mask in indoor public spaces edict slows things down over the next couple of weeks.  Total active cases continue to grow (574) faster than recoveries (548).
Anchorage 22  Fairbanks 2  Kenai  2  Matsu 1

Saturday, July 4, 2020 - Nothing to celebrate this July 4, when it comes to COVID-19.
Another new daily high - 48 new active cases, plus 7 new non-resident cases.  The chart of where these all come from seems to be catching up from other days.  It has more than 48 listed.
Anchorage 32  Fairbanks 10  SE Fairbanks 4  Matsu 7  Kenai 1 Y-K 1  Bethel 1  Bristol Bay 1  Petersburg 1

Here's the chart showing where we are.  The April peak was a tiny hill compared to now.
Yellow is active cases.   Blue is recovered cases.  Red is deaths.

2 more deaths!  The first time since April 4 that we had two deaths in one day.
3 more hospitalizations.

From what I can tell, today is the first time since April 12 that active cases (544) are more than recovered cases (551).  Back in April, new cases were dropping.  There were 156 new cases.  Recoveries were increasing and for the first time were higher - 157.  Three months later, active cases are climbing faster than ever and recoveries climbing at a much slower rate.

Total cases are 1111.

Friday, July 3, 2020 -  
TODAY EVERY NUMBER IS UP.  Deaths +1.  Hospitalizations +1.
A daily new case record of 46, eclipsing yesterday's record of 39.  Plus 11 more new non-resident cases.  We whipped through the 400s in three days (faster than ever getting through 100 cases) to reach 509 active cases.

Anchorage 21  Fairbanks 10  Bethel 1  Matsu 5  Kenai 4  Kusilvak 1  Valdez/Cordova 1  Juneau 1

In his last press conference, the Governor said they were constantly monitoring the numbers and would make adjustments when necessary, but was vague about what numbers would trigger action.  He has said that the key to him is hospital capacity.  But hospitalizations and deaths lag confirmed cases by weeks.  When the hospitalization numbers start rising, it could be too late to protect them from overcrowding.

One doctor, Miles Beckett, in a Twitter threadwrites that while nationally we're seeing cases go up but deaths go down, it's not really what's happening. It's an example, he writes, of Simpson's Paradox which Wikipedia describes as:
 "a phenomenon in probability and statistics, in which a trend appears in several different groups of data but disappears or reverses when these groups are combined."
So by aggregating nationwide data we come to different conclusions than if we look at each discrete  outbreaks as its own event.  Aggregating the data makes the death and hospitalization rates look promising.  But in the individual locations, it's bad.  Beckett tweets:
"8/9 The truth is simple, and horrifying. We are about to have dozens of NYCs around the country. The next 8 weeks are going to brutal, no matter what we do. ICUs overflowing, ventilators rationed, hundreds of thousands of deaths."
I think Alaska started out by shutting things down early and kept numbers low.   But our numbers are going up faster and faster now.  In response, Anchorage's mayor has imposed mandatory mask wearing in indoor public spaces. That began Monday, four days ago.  That should help, but we are starting this second round from much higher numbers than the first round.  The virus is much more widely spread among people and throughout the state this time.  

Thursday, July 2, 2020 -If you think the virus is being blown out of proportion, you can point to the fact that today's numbers show no increase in deaths or hospitalizations.  Alaska has had a low tally in deaths, though hospitalizations are going up, but slowly.
If you want people to wear masks in public, you can point to the fact we had the highest increase in resident cases - 39 - ever, plus 11 more non-resident cases.  Our total cases raced through the 900's in 3 days (another record) to 1017.  And our active cases is also a record at 468, 32 more than yesterday's record high.
Anchorage 15  Fairbanks 2  SE Fairbanks 2  Matsu 14  Kenai 4  Sitka 1  (numbers don't always match as State tries to identify where cases come from)

We're moving in the wrong direction.  Our hospitalizations could well start moving up in 5 days to a week.  Though if most of the newly infected are young and not in risky categories, maybe not.  Anchorage's mandatory masking which started yesterday should help bring these numbers down in a week or two.  Let's hope.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020 -  The BLUE  is a reminder it's a new month, and we are now starting the second half of the year.
Highest new case count yet again - 38, plus 4 non-residents.  This is how places go from low, good numbers suddenly to being in trouble.  We have a record high 436 active cases.

Anchorage 17  Fairbanks 7  SE Fairbanks 3  Matsu 7  Kenai 5  Ketchikan 1  NW Arctic 1

No new deaths, one new hospitalization.  At yesterday's press conference, the Governor sounded - note sounding is his style - good.  Some of the content was reasonable - he did a good job of empathizing with those who don't want to wear masks and with those who do.  But clearly his non-mask toleration is political and doesn't follow the what experts are now saying.  And he kept saying, everything is in play, we're watching the numbers, and if necessary we'll add restrictions.  But really didn't say what might trigger higher rules.  He really, really wants to keep things open.  He's right that we have low numbers in comparison to other states.  But other states that were gloating about how much better they were than New York, are now in trouble.  You can look at a map of curves for the country here.

With the increasing numbers of new cases, tracing contacts gets harder.  And test result turnaround is longer so the tracing doesn't begin until several days after someone is identified as positive.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020 - I'd like to say we are starting to go down in the roller coaster, that we're going faster and faster.  Today we had the most new  cases ever 36.  Plus 11 more non-resident cases.
The metaphor works for the acceleration of cases, but the roller coaster is going down to go faster, while we are going up.  And roller coaster rides only go down a short way before slowing down.  We've been complacent.  We only have 2 or 3 new cases a day.  But that hasn't been true since the end of May.  We could quickly look like the other states that had low numbers, then opened up and the numbers surged.  The more people who are positive, the faster it spreads.  MUCH faster.   Fortunately, Anchorage has a new required mask rule for indoor public places.  Even though the governor's economic fears has led him to say that doesn't include State offices in Anchorage.  We'll see how that plays out.
I would also note that we had nearly ten times the number of tests reported more yesterday than the previous day.  In fact, on my bike ride I saw the cars line up all the way around the block waiting to get into the drive by testing.
On the plus side, NO new deaths or hospitalizations.  But they lag behind the tests by ten days or more.

Anchorage 22    Fairbanks 5    Matsu 2    Kenai 5    Valdez/Cordova 1    Juneau 1

If the Anchorage masking requirement does what it should do, our numbers should go down in ten days to two weeks.

Folks, we should be thinking about masks and as much isolation as possible well into next year.  Even if a vaccine is available by November - unlikely - it will take time for people to get it.  And some experts have warned it might only be effective for 50% of the people who get vaccinated.

Monday, June 29, 2020 - 21 new cases, 4 new non-resident cases.  No new hospitalizations or deaths.  In fact hospital readiness stats are good - at least for Anchorage, not sure that's true in the rest of the state.
We've been seeing 2-3000 new tests a day lately, but the new number today was less than 400 new tests.  Maybe that's a Sunday blip, but want to note it here just in case it isn't.  Test positivity rate is 1.27%.  Anything above 1% means each positive person is spreading to more than one other person.  This could, again, be due to having fewer tests on Sunday.  The last time we were this higher was April 27 when it was 1.34. (Monitoring this takes a steady cursor on the state charts, so I could have missed another higher date.) The test positivity graph is among the testing graphs.  Look around a bit.
The scientific backing for masks being the most effective community projection seems to be pretty universal.  The more people wear masks, the harder it is for the virus to spread.  From the PressHerald: 
Scientists provided conflicting studies and advice early in the pandemic, but research is now firmly on the side of mask-wearing to stop the spread of the virus, especially indoors in public places, health experts say. The shift from conflicting advice to consensus came about as scientists learned more about the virus and how it is spread.
My recommendation for people who don't want to wear masks in business establishments is to exert your Constitutional right to boycott those businesses that require masks.

Sunday, June 28, 2020 - 29 New Cases.  That's the most ever.  Well, because of how cases are categorized I have to qualify that statement.  It's the most new Alaska resident cases ever.  There were also 4 new non-resident cases and since that category appeared well after I started tracking, I added it, but didn't come up with a total non-resident and resident new cases category.  This is why when someone uses exact numbers - or even worse to two decimal points - and those numbers are then aggregated by someone else, things can get squirrelly.
We also have the highest active case number - 348.  We spent 15 days with 200-299 active cases.  We're 3 days into the 300s and we're already at 348!

Saturday, June 27, 2020  - Up 18 (based on increase over yesterday's total), but state's number is 19.
The two deaths posted yesterday were Outside Alaskan residents, not in-state.  And 8 new non-resident cases.
Anchorage 10    Fairbanks 1    Matsu 3    Kenai 2    Sitka 2    Juneau 1 Bethel 1  Y-K Delta 1
Again the numbers don't add up.  I think they are catching up with cases they didn't have locations for, but that's a guess.
Total Active cases now:  319 (a new high.)  Total cumulative cases:  854

Friday, June 26, 2020 - 20 more Alaskans infected. Spread across the state.

Anchorage 7    Fairbanks 3    Matsu 4    Kenai 2    Sitka 2    Juneau 2

10 more non-resident cases.

2 new deaths to get us to 14.  We went from zero deaths on March 23 to 9 deaths on April 14 - a total of 22 days, 3 weeks.  During that time we locked down.  (And a couple of those deaths were Alaskans who were not in the state.)
Then we went about 22 more days before the next death reported on May 6.
Then 34 days until the next death on June 9.
Three more days to get to 11 on June 12.
Two weeks later, we get two more deaths, reported June 26.  I hope we're not going to repeat the rapid increase in deaths we saw in March and early April.  But our active cases number is higher than it ever was back then.

2 more hospitalizations.  We're at an all time high of active cases: 303.

Thursday, June 25, 2020 - Not Good.  24/25 new cases. (24 more than yesterdays total cases, but state says 25.)  PLUS 21 new non-resident cases.  And another hospitalization.  Total active cases is a new high - 291.  AND we broke 800 total cumulative cases (Alaska residents) landing at 818.

The debate between the economy and health appears to be a non-debate.  It looks, as many medical and public health experts and economists are right.  It's not the lock-downs that are causing the economic problems.  It's the virus.  Enough people are voluntarily locking down because of the virus to dampen the economy.  And the compromise stand - everyone wearing masks -  has become a political marker so Trumpies don't like to wear them.  Most people have accepted that businesses can set dress standards - no shoes no shirt no service.  Masks are no difference - except they're for health not for aesthetics.  Vote.  Request your mail in ballot.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020 - 14 new cases, plus 7 new non-resident cases.  The Alaska active total is 273, a new high after a couple of days pauses when recoveries outpaced new cases.  There's one more hospitalization.  Mask up!

Tuesday, June 23, 2020 - The State number of new cases today is 16, but when I subtract today's total cases from yesterday's I get 17.  PLUS there were 19 new non-resident cases.  I haven't tracked the combination of resident and non-resident cases, but I suspect this is one of the highest days, if not the highest.  It also suggests that the airport screening process the Governor has set up along with non-monitored self isolation may be dampening things a bit, but not enough.  We also don't know who is monitoring the various programs run by businesses - like fishing and oil and construction - to prevent the spread of the virus.
Active cases went up by 6 to 264, four shy of our record of 268.
And one new hospitalization.
Again, the new cases are all over the state:

  • Anchorage 8
  • Faribanks 1
  • Matsu 1
  • Bethel 1
  • Kenai 1
  • Nome 1
  • Yakutat/Hoonah/Angoon 1

Yes, that doesn't add up to 16 or 17.  The State doesn't always tell us everything.  But it's not because they're hiding.  It's just the data isn't all there at the same time and other such problems.  I'd remind readers again at the State site there is a lot more data in user friendly charts.

Monday, June 22, 2020 - Only 6 new cases and the recovered number was 16.  That resulted in a drop of 10 active cases.  There was one more cumulative hospitalization up to 61.
Anchorage 3   Matsu 2   North Slope 1

(Numbers in different categories don't always add up right because, well, they don't.  Maybe someone's status (active, recovered, resident, non-resident) gets change in one place but not another, or reporting dates and results dates have a lag.  I don't worry about it - the long term numbers are more important than daily numbers.)
We've been climbing for quite a while.  We had one point when the active numbers were the same for two days.  This is the first drop since June 15.  Before that, the last drop was May 13. (Best as I can tell with my cursor on the State's "Death, Recovered, Active" chart.  Scroll down to orange, navy, and red graph.)

Sunday, June 21, 2020 -  12 new cases

  • Anchorage 6
  • Fairbanks 3
  • Matsu 1
  • Kenai 1
  • Bristol Bay 1

These numbers do not include non-residents.  There were 11 recoveries listed, so that means we increased Active Cases by 1 to 268.  It's sunny and Father's Day so forget the numbers and enjoy the beautiful weather.  Mask up if others are around.

Saturday, June 20, 2020 - 21 new cases.
Anchorage - 5   Fairbanks - 7   Matsu - 1   Bethel - 1   Kenai - 2   N.Slope - 1  Y-K - 1  Sitka - 1
(That doesn't add up to 21, but they don't always get the chart matching the new number.)
We've had 5 new hospitalizations in the last two days - we're up to 61 cumulative.  Here's what it looks like from where you can see all the state graphs.

This is what we look like based on daily new cases.  We peaked first in early April, then went sharply down.  No we're way back up again and our active case numbers are the highest every almost every day now.  We have one of the worst looking graphs, BUT at this point our numbers are still comparatively low.  We still have 800+ hospital beds available.  But not in some of the smaller towns that are showing cases this week.  If we keep up like this before long we could hit 100 new cases a day.  The site marks the states:

  • Red - Need Action (42 states + DC)
  • Yellow - Nearly There (7 states)
  • Green - Winning  (2 states)

Friday, June 19, 2020 - It's 11:55 and there are no new numbers yet.  That's usually a bad sign.
Numbers got up at 12 noon.  14 new cases plus 12 Non-Resident cases!  4 new hospitalizations.  And there were 11 recoveries.  So we're up one in the active cases to 247 - the highest number.  While that seems like nothing compared to some other states, what's troubling is that we continue to go up.  Meanwhile I have SF and Seattle area grandkids on Jitsi (a video conferencing site) so I'm going to let the numbers do most of the talking and post now.

Thursday, June 18, 2020 - How fast is the virus spreading?  We passed the 700 total case mark to reach 708 total cases today.  That's an increase of 12 new cases.  (7 more non-residents,  not counted as part of the Alaska total.)   11 people were listed as recovered so the active cases total inched up by 1 (12-11)  to a new record high of 246.  And one new hospitalization.

There are lots of ways to try to play with the numbers trying to make sense of all this.  The State's site has lots of useful charts.  Below is a table showing how long it has take to increase by 100, on the total number of cases.  Since we broke 700 today, this a a good day to look and see that we went  from 600 to 700 in the shortest time (7 days) for any increase of 100.  You can also see that we were close to 7 days once before (back in second week of April - 9 days to get from 100-200).  Then the impact of the lockdown hit and we took 34 days to get to 300.  But now we are speeding up again.  Getting to 700 was the fastest.

total cases
100-200 200-300 300-400 400-500 500-600 600-700
15 days 9 days  10 days 34 days 15 days 9 days  7 days

The 12 new cases reported today came from:

Anchorage 2      Kenai 1     Matsu 3     Fairbanks 4     Ketchikan 1     Juneau 1

Wednesday, June 17, 2020 - The 3 Monday was a blip.  12 new cases reported yesterday and 20 reported today. [I say reported because the numbers posted today reflect yesterday's numbers]  The cases are scattered around the state:

  • Anchorage - 4
  • Kenai - 2
  • Matsu - 2
  • Fairbanks - 6
  • Ketchikan - 1
  • Juneau - 1
  • Kodiak - 1
  • Sitka - 1
  • North Slope Borough - 1
  • Wrangell - 1

We had brief pause yesterday in the increasing number of active cases because the recoveries equaled the new cases.  We were at 235 active cases for two days.  But we're up 11 today, to 246.  Our all time high.  There were also 5 new non-resident cases.  Tomorrow we're very likely to hit 700 total cases going up at the fastest pace yet.  While some people discuss this as health/life versus the economy, others are arguing that it's the virus, not the lockdowns that are hurting the economy.  By the second logic, opening up only hurts the economy worse in the long run.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - It's almost noon and there are no new numbers up yet on the State site.  That usually means bad news. Are they delayed because they're holding off as long as they can? Or, more likely, with higher numbers, there's more work sorting out where they're from and all the other categories.  Let's hope today it's just a glitch and we'll be low like yesterday.
OK, numbers got up at 11:55 am.  Twelve new cases - Anchorage 6, Kenai 4, Matsu 1, Bethel 1.  The number of recoveries was also 12, so active cases stayed the same at 235.  The first time it didn't go up since May 21 (best as I can tell on the state's chart).  I didn't start tracking active cases until June 6 and this is the first time since then it hasn't gone up.
Number of tests was NOT updated, maybe they'll do that later today as they got the other numbers up before their self-imposed noon deadline. (Well, it's a national deadline as I understand it, but not sure what agency set it.)  [UPDATED June 16, 2020 12:20am - Yesterday's test numbers are now up - 76,215.  The original also didn't list the number of new cases, but you can easily figure that out based on yesterday and today's total cases.  It's up now too.]
The number of tests listed yesterday is just about 10% of Alaska's population.  But it's clear that some people get tested multiple times - essential workers particularly, but also people who might have false positives or false negatives.  And presumably the test totals include non-residents.  So we don't actually know how many different individual Alaskans have been tested so we can't really calculate the percent of Alaskans who have been tested.  I don't know if the State has kept track of that or not.

Monday, June 15, 2020 - Only 3 new cases listed today.  That's good.  But we've also had a long slow increase in the number of hospitalizations.  I was going to say it's increasing faster now, but going through the numbers that probably isn't quite accurate.  There were 3 days at 49 hospitalizations, then it jumped by 2 to 51 and stayed there for 2 days, then up to 52 for 2 days, and today's number have it up to 53.

Hospitalizations (and availability of hospital space) is the factor the governor said he was looking into.  But hospitalizations are problematic.  In this Hear and Now segment today, Prof Erin Bromage says (about 2:56 into the audio) that while a lot of the numbers we're getting on the virus can be played with,
"One of the things hard to manipulate is those hospitalizations.  Unfortunately they are about three weeks behind what’s happening in the community.  If we see hospitalizations starting to rise then, it’s almost too late at that stage."
[Blogger note:  My use of numbers (write out or just use the number) is very inconsistent today.  Sorry.  It just seems the numbers as numbers stand out better.  And I'm getting isolation looniness.) Wear your masks if your going to be near other people!!!!!)

Sunday, June 14, 2020 -  Seven new cases by my count (Yesterday total was 654 and today it's 661) but the State site says 9 new cases.  I'm guessing the adjusted yesterday's total down.  But add in five new non-resident cases.  But seven is a lot better that yesterday's 29!

  • Anchorage - 4
  • Fairbanks - 4
  • Matsu - 1

Saturday, June 13, 2020 - RECORD HIGHS AGAIN -
Most new cases ever - 29.    237 active cases, 5 new Non-resident cases up to 70, another hospitalization
We are in a faster, steeper curve than ever.  The governor's dropping of restrictions is having its impacts.  His 'trusting Alaskans to do the right thing' attitude toward wearing masks is probably also having an impact.  That State and Anchorage both did the right things to slow the virus at the beginning.  We were in enviable shape.  Now we're rapidly going higher and higher.
And the new cases are all over the state:

  • Anchorage - 6
  • Fairbanks - 3
  • Ketchikan - 3
  • Kenai - 5
  • Matsu  - 2
  • Sitka - 2
  • Bethel - 2
  • Nome - 1
  • Wrangle - 1

These are the numbers and locations put up by the State, some cases are missing.
And yesterday when I went to the market to pick up our pre-ordered groceries, I was impressed that nearly everyone I saw going in and out wore masks.  Maybe the rising numbers are affecting them

Friday, June 12, 2020 - The second new death in four days - after over a month at 10 deaths, we now have 12.  Two new hospitalizations.  (This is the number, it appears, that the governor is watching most closely.  We still have lots of ICU beds, but it things start moving quickly, he might act too late.)  15 new hospitalizations.  We're up to 210 active cases.  Trying to figure out the State's math, here.
Yesterday morning they posted 203 active cases.  At 1:20pm they changed it to 202 - and lowered the total confirmed from 611-610. Today we have 15 new cases which gets us to 625 total cumulative cases.  We also have 210 active cases - only up seven from yesterday's 203, not up 15.  We can subtract the 2 new recoveries but then we should have 215 active cases.  And we can subtract the one death and get to 214.
This also raises the issues of the non-resident cases.  We went up seven.  What happens when non-residents get hospitalized?  They don't get counted in our state totals, but do they get counted if they use up hospital beds?  What about those isolated by their employers under the employer's protocol?  If they get sick enough for a hospital, do they get counted in beds used?  It would seem they should.

Another set of questions relates to total tests administered.  We're up to 70,880.  Alaska's population is  about 731,000.  So we're very close to having tested 10% of the population.  But not exactly, because a number of people - like essential workers - are being tested multiple times.  And it would appear that non-residents are counted in the testing, even if they are listed among Alaska active cases.  I can't find data that tells us how many distinct individual Alaskans have been tested so I could figure out what percent of our population has been tested.  [I'm going to try to revise these questions to they are clearer.  If I do, I'll just edit these last two paragraphs.  But I want to get this posted now for people who are interested in the changes.]

Thursday, June 11, 2020 - At yesterday afternoon's news conference, the governor barely acknowledged that we had the most active cases ever.  It became clear that the standard they are using for closing things back down is related to medical readiness.  As long as there are plenty of ICU beds and ventilators, the economy is what's important.  He also is opposed to mandatory mask wearing at all.  While he said he recommended masks where there are other people and that he wears one in the grocery store, etc. he said doctors were all over the place on whether it mattered.  That's not the impression I get.  There have been various reports over time, but it seems like now most are convinced that wearing masks slows the spread - particularly if COVID-19 carriers wear masks.  My concern is that once enough people have the virus, it will be hard to slow it down without serious impacts.  I'm writing this while I'm waiting for today's numbers.  It's 11:39am and none were up when I looked a moment ago.  The later the numbers, the pattern seems to be, the higher the numbers.  We'll see.
They just came up at 11:40am:  17 new cases.  203 active cases. They're all over the place:

  • Anchorage 4
  • Fairbanks 3
  • Kenai 3
  • Juneau 2
  • Kodiak 1
  • Matsu 1
  • Sitka 2
  • Northwest Arctic Borough 1
[UPDATED June 12, 2020 - the State revised active cases yesterday at 1:20pm from 203 to 202 and total cases from 611 to 610.]
Part of me gets the governor's reluctance to require masks.  He doesn't want to piss off his base.  He thinks there will be better compliance by some if they aren't 'forced' to wear a mask. Not sure this is true.  But I agree it's hard to enforce.  We have only 11 total deaths so far, but how many more will start showing up?  Time will tell.  The Recall Campaign is hampered by the virus which is to the governor's advantage.  But his behavior concerning the virus is way different than it was before the recall petition was accepted and I'm sure it's affected his behavior for the better.  And unlike Trump, Dunleavy knows how to act rational and reasonable when he needs to.

Wednesday, June 10, 2020 - Not sure where the Wed comments went.  I really thought I'd posted.  Yesterday (Wed) was a big day.  We broke our record of 188 active cases.  The new high was 190.  Since then we'd been down as low as 33 active cases.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020 - Compared to yesterday, 11 new cases seems good.  But two weeks ago it would have been a spike.  And we had our first new death since May 6, over a month ago.  And a new hospitalization.

  • Anchorage 6 new cases, 
  • Kenai 2
  • Northwest Borough 1
  • Haines 1

But take the numbers with a grain of salt.  When there's a positive test result, when someone was sick (or not sick), and when reported means the numbers, on a day to day basis, are squirrelly.  They make more sense over time.  And overtime Alaska proved that locking things down works.  And now we're proving that opening them up again, even in a controlled way, starts the curve quickly back up.

We're 15 active cases away from equaling our highest level of active cases - 188.

Monday, June 8, 2020 - NOT GOOD NEWS.  19  new cases!  The average for the last seven days is 13.7 cases a day which is slightly higher than our previous highest week in March.  We have a total of 169 active cases.  The highest level of active cases was 188 on April 2.

We gained 25 active cases in the last two days, so at that rate, we'll have our highest number of active cases by Wednesday.  You can see the curve on the chart I posted Friday (scroll down) or see the most current one at the State website which is interactive and your cursor can get you specific numbers for each point on the chart.

This means there are more folks out there with the virus again and chances of being exposed is higher.  Of the 169, only 48 are hospitalized.  The rest should be in quarantine, but who's monitoring that?  And how many people did they infect before getting their results?  Mask up when you go out.

Sunday, June 7, 2020 - 8 new cases. 6 Anchorage, 1 Kenai, 1 Matsu.  1 new non-resident case. 152 active cases.  ADN reports online this morning:
"Crew, passengers on Alaska state ferry Tustumena in isolation after crew member tests positive for COVID-19
The crew member tested positive on Saturday after the vessel arrived in Dutch Harbor, and public-health workers are tracing contacts. The ferry has been taken out of service and most of the crew and passengers on board are now in isolation."

EndCoronaVirus has a map of the US and right now, Alaska has one of the most alarming charts.  But my sense is that our low numbers overall are the problem that distorts the seriousness.  After all, Vermont, one of the few green states, had 30 new cases the other day.  We've never had that many in one day.  My guess is that these charts show trends without considering total numbers.

Green=Winning  Orange=Nearly there  

Saturday, June 6, 2020 - 12 more new cases today.  We've been in double digits everyday this week except Monday.  We also added two more non-resident cases.  I added that number yesterday (in the defunct negative tests column.)  Today I added Active Cases, which the state has added into their basic dashboard chart.  We're at 144 active cases.  That's 10 more than yesterday (we added twelve cases and two people were added to the recovered tally._  As I mentioned yesterday, on May 4 we were down to 33 active cases.  So far, deaths has remained unchanged since May 6.  Let's hope that continues, though as number of cases grows, inevitably, deaths are likely to increase as well.

Friday, June 5, 2020 - The numbers are taking on greater complexity.  The state is now showing non-resident numbers as well as Alaska cases.  So the Alaska total - up to 524.  But add to that 43 non-residents, mostly, it seems, people coming to Alaska for commercial fishing.  So yesterday's 8 new cases didn't include about 18 more, mostly people who came to Whittier to work in the fishing industry.  This was a problem lots of people were worried about - bringing in lots of people from Outside into small, isolated Alaskan communities.  It's happening.  Today's additional cases is 11, but I'm not how to figure out yet how many new non-resident cases there are.  (It seems today the dashboard was changed to include non-resident.  They've also added an 'active cases' number.  That's 134 today, but presumably doesn't include the non-residents.  It wasn't long ago  (May 4) we were down 33 active cases.  Here's the state's graph showing active cases (orange), recovered cases (deep blue) and deaths (red).  On the state website you can see numbers and dates by moving your cursor.
Click on image to enlarge and focus
You can see we're moving back up again, though not yet as steeply as in March.

Thursday, June 4, 2020  - 8 new cases.  (Anchorage = 4  Kenai=3  Matsu=1) and 1 new hospitalization.  Waiting game to see what the trend for the seven days looks like.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020 - 18 more cases identified.  6 in Anchorage, 7 in Kenai, 5 in Matsu.  We're back into consecutive days in March.  From March 25-31 we had an average of 13 new cases a day.  Our last week has also been an average of 13 new cases a day.

We're over 500 cases today.  Let's look at this.
15 days from 0 - 100
10 days from 100 - 200
9 days from 200 - 300
34 days from 300 - 400
15 days from 400 - 500

The trend is not encouraging.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020 - 20 more cases identified.  The  State site identifies 14 as being Anchorage and 5 being Kenai.  Yes, that's only 19, but the charts don't always match the numbers.  Let's wait a couple more days to see if this is just a spike due to the outbreak at the Providence Provisional Care  Center, or if it's more widespread, likely due to opening up more businesses.

Monday, June 1, 2020 - Seven new cases - 4 in Kenai, 3 in Anchorage.  At last night's press conference the Governor said 10 of yesterday's 17 cases were in a nursing home facility, residents and caregivers.  Dr. Anne Zink said the Kenai cases were related to a gathering.  Communities with fewer than 1000 people aren't identified to protect patient confidentiality.  While today's numbers are lower than yesterday's record spike of 27, the last five days have seen 13, 5, 4, 27, and 7 new cases, significantly higher than the weeks before.  Still small numbers, compared to other states, but probably the result of opening up businesses and gatherings.  With demonstrations yesterday over George Floyd's murder, expect another spike in two weeks or so.

I've moved my original and first updated intro down here just to preserve it, as I add a new one on September 11, 2020:

After daily posts since early March on the State's COVID-19 case count, I've decided it makes more sense to just update my charts here daily, beginning June 1, 2020.  I started these to keep track of the daily changes in numbers, since the state replaced the old numbers with the new and there was no way to see the old.  Then in early April they adopted a template that allows you to interactively look at lots of the State's data on their site.  I encourage you to use that link.  They have a lot of interesting charts. 

What I'm continuing here is the basic chart that show us -numerically - the increases day by day from early March.  You can see the old ones at the Alaska COVID-19 Count label.  But I warn you, there are three months of posts and you'll have to keep hitting Older Posts at the bottom of the pages.

I'll keep a daily set of update notes below the table. 

UPDATE: July 21, 2020 -  I updated table today, moving some columns and adding two columns:  1) Total New Cases (resident & non-resident;  2) Test Positivity).  Since state counts Residents and Non-residents separately, and there's increasing numbers of non-resident cases, these seems useful.  Also, since test-positivity seems to be viewed by many as an important indicator of how fast things are spreading, I've added it as well. 
Again I'd note that the numbers on the State pages are slippery.  That is they make adjustments as new data come in.  A new case might be changed from resident to non-resident.  A location of a positive test two days ago may be posted after the new case is posted.  I figure the short term numbers work themselves out in the long run.  I just go by the numbers posted each day and note when there is a difference between my numbers and the state numbers.  For example, I subtract yesterday's total cases from today's to get my New Cases.  The State number is sometimes different from that. 

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