After weeks with no new cases, 2 people in Juneau have tested positive for COVID-19

Katie Church, an RN at Bartlett Regional Hospital, demonstrates putting on personal protective equipment to handle a patient infected with COVID-19 on April 7, 2020 in Juneau.  (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)

After three weeks without any new reported cases of COVID-19, Juneau has two new cases, according to the Alaska Department of Health and Human Services.

According to the City and Borough of Juneau, both cases resulted from being in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus, known as secondary transmission.

“The infection’s incubation period is two weeks but you could kind of catch it at the tail end and then develop it another two weeks later,” said Charlee Gribbon, an infectious disease preventionist at Bartlett Regional Hospital. “So, I think we’re not in the clear five weeks past the last infection, depending on what’s going on with asymptomatic spread.”

Gribbon confirmed the new cases are a 54-year-old male and a 53-year-old female.

She reminds Juneauites to continue practicing distancing measures, don’t share space with people who are not in your household and wear a mask.

“When you are inside, in our restaurants, in a church and in any place inside and you’re breathing the same air as other people, you’ve got to keep a face covering on,” she said.

Gribbon says that the more people are maximizing space, the safer they’ll be.

Since the first case in Juneau was confirmed in March, 29 people in the borough have tested positive for COVID-19 and 26 of those cases have recovered.

Juneau’s last positive case of COVID-19 was identified on April 21, but city data traces the onset of symptoms for that individual to April 15.

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