On August 6, YKHC confirmed a positive COVID-19 case in Bethel of an individual who was identified through rapid testing, in accordance with Health Mandate 18. The individual is not a resident of Bethel, and therefore per State reporting protocols, will not be counted in the YK Delta positive case count.
The individual is currently self-isolating and YKHC is working with the State of Alaska Section of Epidemiology to conduct contact tracing, follow-up testing, and ensure precautions are taken to protect people the individual may have been in close contact with. All close contacts have been identified and will be provided instructions for follow-up testing, and advised on precautions to take.
While known close contacts of the positive case are minimal and contact tracing indicates this is a travel-related case, YKHC continues to offer free COVID-19 testing, without an appointment, at the Bethel drive-thru testing site every Wednesday from noon to 4 p.m. Testing also continues by appointment at the Bethel drive-thru testing site on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, by calling 543-6949.
The pandemic and the public health risks it poses is not over. Additional cases emphasize the importance of continuing to practice all known protective measures. Protective measures include: avoid all non-essential travel, opt for free COVID-19 testing upon arrival at the Bethel, St. Mary’s, and Aniak airports when arriving from out-of-region, practice regular handwashing, remain physically distant (more than six feet) from anyone who does not reside in your same household, wear a mask when in public, and frequently disinfect high-touch surfaces in your home.
Symptoms of COVID-19 include a fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, diarrhea, and diminished sense of taste or smell. If you have these symptoms, do not go to your village clinic or to the emergency room in Bethel. Instead, call your village clinic or in Bethel call 543-6949 so a health care provider can assist you.
Get the latest information on COVID-19 from YKHC at www.ykhc.org/covid-19.