Public Health news and blog
Increasing cases of COVID-19 in King County highlight the need to limit close contact
Public Health—Seattle & King County continues to monitor cases, hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 and has noted an increase in cases over the past two weeks. Public Health expects to see some increase in cases as we get back to work and other activities in the community because there are more opportunities for COVID-19 to spread.
With food insecurity on the rise, Public Health highlights critical new and existing resources
Exacerbated by COVID-19, a growing number of people in King County are seeking food assistance. To help address this urgent need, Public Health – Seattle & King County, the City of Seattle and the Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction are launching new efforts to connect families in need to food resources.
Meeting of the King County Board of Health June 18, 2020
The King County Board of Health holds a meeting on 6/18/20 at 1:00 p.m. The topic on the agenda includes discussion and possible action on a resolution declaring racism as a public health crisis.
Special meeting of the King County Board of Health June 15
The King County Board of Health holds a special meeting on June 15, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. The topic on the agenda includes discussion and possible action on a resolution supporting King County's application to the Washington State Department of Health to enter Phase 2 of the Safe Start Reopening Plan.
Expanded free COVID-19 testing in south King County
Three new free COVID-19 test sites open in south King County this week. In addition, local community organizations will provide free-drive through testing access in Renton and Federal Way this weekend. Also, the Greater Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network (SCAN) study is resuming. The study will continue to inform King County’s public health response by helping understand where the virus exists in our region and how it is spreading.
Special meeting of the King County Board of Health June 10
The King County Board of Health holds a special meeting on 6/10/20 at 3:00 p.m. Topics on the agenda include discussion and possible action on a rule and regulation relating to telephonic participation by members of the Board of Health and a novel coronavirus response and recovery briefing.
Health officials stress continued vigilance as limited reopening begins
As King County continues its first week of limited reopening of some businesses and recreational activities, Public Health – Seattle & King County reminds the public to continue following physical distancing and infection control practices to help prevent an increase in COVID-19 cases. Also, expanded data available on the COVID-19 dashboard.
Additional free COVID-19 testing sites launch throughout King County
Additional free COVID-19 testing sites are opening in Seattle and other local cities. Public Health – Seattle & King County urges anyone with mild COVID-19 symptoms or who has been in close contact with someone ill with COVID-19 to contact a healthcare provider to discuss testing. Also, King County was approved for modified phase one of reopening.
Standing for justice as we keep our community safe from spread of COVID-19
Public Health – Seattle & King County shared perspectives from our local leadership about George Floyd's tragic death, yet one more in an endless string of violence perpetrated against Black people in our country, and answered questions about participating in protests while reducing the risk of spreading COVID-19.
New data dashboard from Public Health on key indicators of COVID-19 activity
Public Health – Seattle & King County published today a new data dashboard that provides a snapshot of key indicators related to COVID-19 disease activity, testing capacity, and healthcare system status. These data will be useful to help guide decisions about whether restrictions and precautions are adequate, or whether they need to be strengthened or carefully relaxed.
More locations for COVID-19 testing at no cost available throughout King County
To prevent COVID-19 from spreading to family, friends, and the community, Public Health – Seattle & King County recommends that anyone with COVID-19 symptoms or who has been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 be tested right away.
Now available: Local data on unemployment, healthcare, housing and other measures during COVID-19 pandemic
New data tools now available provide information on the social, health and economic impacts during COVID-19.
Face covering directive goes into effect today: Prevent spreading COVID-19 when unable to maintain 6 feet of distance
A health directive to wear face coverings in public goes into effect today. Wear a face covering at any indoor or outdoor public space where you may be within 6 feet of someone who does not live with you.
Protecting rights of people with disabilities as face-covering directive goes into effect Monday
The directive to wear face coverings while in public goes into effect May 18 to help slow the spread of COVID-19. King County asks people to be mindful that it is not recommended for all community members to wear a face covering – including some people with disabilities.
Testing recommended for anyone with mild COVID-19 symptoms; decreased cases in long-term care facilities shows importance of aggressive response
Anyone with mild symptoms of COVID-19 should get tested as soon as possible to reduce its spread through the community – and testing locations are available throughout King County. Also, lower numbers of COVID-19 cases in long-term care facilities point to the importance of public health measures in reducing the spread of the virus in these settings.
Health Officer directs residents to use face coverings in indoor public settings, outdoors where social distancing is difficult
Public Health – Seattle & King County Health Officer Dr. Jeff Duchin, along with King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan, announced a new Health Officer Directive strongly urging face coverings in all indoor public places including grocery stores and other businesses, as well as outside settings where maintaining six feet of social distancing is difficult. This directive will go into effect May 18, 2020.
Latest report shows COVID-19 transmission rate could be rising in King County; social distancing remains key
Latest data shows the COVID-19 transmission rate could be rising across King County and the rest of western Washington after previous indications the transmission rate had fallen below a critical threshold.
Tips for staying safe outdoors as more recreation lands reopen
More public lands are reopening for limited use following closures to slow the spread of COVID-19. King County is offering guidelines for safely enjoying parks, trails, and natural areas.
Two reports show COVID-19 transmission has slowed, while most people still susceptible
Two new reports provide further confirmation that social distancing measures have reduced transmission of COVID-19 in King County.
New analysis shows pronounced racial inequities among COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths
Updated data shows that in King County, COVID-19 is disproportionally impacting communities of color. There is more to do collectively to support all communities with access to testing, information and social supports to address inequities in health outcomes.