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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEDecember 30, 2021
CONTACT: Kari Bray, firstname.lastname@example.org
SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. – Last week saw a steep climb in COVID cases, with more than 2,700 new cases reported between December 19 and 25. That’s the highest single-week total for Snohomish County since the start of the pandemic.
This is likely due to multiple factors. Omicron is spreading rapidly and now represents the vast majority of cases in the region. There is waning immunity for those who were vaccinated but have not yet gotten a booster dose. And at the same time, cold weather has been pushing gatherings indoors.
For those who have not yet gotten their booster but are eligible, now is the time to book an appointment. Keep in mind that, given the current demand, it may take some time to get in.
"Just to reiterate, we really need people to get vaccinated and boosted, and to focus on doing all of the prevention measures consistently and correctly,” said Dr. Chris Spitters, Health Officer for the Snohomish Health District.
Potential impacts from gatherings over the holidays likely won’t be seen for another week or two. Heading into New Year’s weekend, consider postponing or canceling gatherings. If you do gather, do so as safely as possible.
On Tuesday, the Washington State Department of Health updated isolation and quarantine guidance to align with new recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For the general public:
When in doubt, get tested on day five and as always, wear a mask when in public spaces after isolation or quarantine are completed. Also be mindful of activities, especially indoors and in crowded settings.
The state Department of Health also is updating work restriction recommendations for healthcare personnel to align with CDC recommendations.
These changes take effect immediately.
The statewide face covering order remains in effect, so masking is required for everyone over the age of 5 when indoors in shared spaces.
Weather and holiday closures this week have impacted drive-thru testing and vaccination sites operated by the Snohomish Health District. The next scheduled days of operation are January 2 for Ash Way Park & Ride in Lynnwood and January 3 for the Longfellow testing site on Oakes Avenue in Everett.
Vaccination appointments are available for those 12+ at Ash Way. This site is typically open Wednesdays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., but is closed December 30 and 31.
The full schedule for next week is as follows:
Appointments for testing are available at www.snohd.org/testing and vaccine appointments at www.snohd.org/drivethru.
Those without internet access, needing language assistance, or requiring additional support in scheduling can reach the Health District’s call center at 425.339.5278 to schedule a testing or vaccine appointment. Callers after hours or on holidays or weekends can leave a message, which will be returned on the next business day.