Sitka has first confirmed case of COVID-19 late Saturday

    Sitka, Alaska (KINY) - On Saturday, April 25, SEARHC announced the first confirmed COVID-19 case in the community of Sitka.

    This was the fifth confirmed case within a SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium facility.

    “Positive COVID-19 cases became a reality in Southeast on March 17, and with today’s announcement, they became a reality for Sitka,” said SEARHC Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Elliot Bruhl.  “This confirmed case showcases the persistence of this virus, and the ability for asymptomatic people to spread it within the community. SEARHC will continue to follow the framework constructed by our Incident Command System and implement planned precautions throughout the Consortium.”

    There were 339 confirmed cases in the State of Alaska on Saturday morning. The confirmed patient is a resident at Sitka Long-Term Care. The patient was immediately isolated and transferred to Mt. Edgecumbe Medical Center, and plans were implemented to ensure the safety of the other residents.

    An investigation is currently underway to identify the source of the virus. For the last two months, SLTC has followed rigorous guidelines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services to help keep this virus from contacting our most vulnerable population.

    All outside visitors are prohibited from entering the building and staff is screened at the beginning of every shift. All SLTC residents have been tested and tests have been offered to residents and staff at the Pioneer Home.

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