Jefferson sees new COVID-19 cases with positives out of county as state, national numbers rise

Jefferson County recorded three to four new COVID-19 positives this weekend as tests of county residents performed outside of the county came back positive, health officials said.

Jefferson County Health Officer Dr. Tom Locke confirmed one positive late Saturday and said two or three more may be confirmed following additional testing.

That gives the county at least 95 total cases since March, with eight to nine active. The listed infection rate for Jefferson County is 25.08 per 100,000 population during the past two weeks, at the low end of the state’s moderate-risk category.

Locke said that figure should change today, although it likely won’t be significant. He estimated the infection rate will remain below 30 per 100,000.

Locke said five cases from a couple of weeks ago will be drop off from the infection rate soon.

Meanwhile, Clallam County had no new positives Sunday after it recorded eight new cases on Friday and Saturday.

Clallam County has had 299 COVID-19 positives since March. The county has 16 active cases with two recent patients hospitalized. The infection rate in Clallam County is at 26 per 100,000 for the past two weeks.

Locke said Sunday a “third wave” of new infections is hitting across the state and nationwide.

“What we have to do is get ready for this third wave,” he said.

Nationally, there were 126,000 new COVID-19 infections Saturday.

King County, including Seattle, had 418 new infections reported Saturday and another 450 Sunday. Every county in the state is expected to report numbers today, and Washington will likely see more than 1,000 new cases, Locke said.

He added “a vaccine is in sight,” with frontline health care professionals expected to first receive a vaccine by mid-December, but people can’t drop their guard with the rapid rise in new infections all over the country, and they must continue to take precautions with masking, social distancing and avoiding gatherings.

“If we don’t take this seriously, the hospitals will fill up, the schools will close and the stay-at-home orders will come back,” Locke said.

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