COVID hospitalization rise in King County but ‘remain at stable, low levels,’ says health officer

Apr 26, 2022, 8:52 AM
Dr. Jeff Duchin, a health officer with Seattle and King County Public Health, speaks during a press...
Dr. Jeff Duchin, a health officer with Seattle and King County Public Health, speaks during a press conference. (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Once again, COVID cases and hospitalizations are on the rise in King County.

Health officials say it’s pushed King County from the “green” to the “yellow” zone – meaning the county is back in the CDC’s medium COVID-19 community level.

It takes more than 200 new cases per 100,000 people to be in that medium range.

Currently, King County is seeing about 500 cases per day, which is triple the low seen a few weeks ago.

However, it still falls far short of the 6,500 cases per day the county saw during the omicron peak in January.

Earlier in February, Washington state’s Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah indicated that the Washington State Department of Health will highlight hospitalizations over case count metrics, saying “the most important thing for us is the health care capacity … our focus remains on hospitalizations” with the note that the abundance of unreported at home COVID tests clouds overall test results as an indicator for where Washington state is at in the pandemic.

‘Focus remains on hospitalizations,’ WA health secretary says amid slight uptick in omicron cases

Hospitalizations are on the rise in King County as well, with public health reporting a seven-day average of nearly eight hospitalizations as of Feb. 20, a week over week 86% increase.

Referencing hospitalizations, “all ages are trending up recently, but the highest rates continue to be in young adults, while older adults and children under five years have the lowest rates,” Public Health Officer Dr. Jeff Duchin said Monday.

“During this time, hospitalizations and deaths have remained at stable low levels compared to the lowest levels we’ve seen between other pandemic waves. And this is thanks to the protection that vaccinations provide from serious illnesses.”

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COVID hospitalization rise in King County but ‘remain at stable, low levels,’ says health officer